2018 Favorites

Coming to you from my hometown of Lancaster, PA; it’s the best of 2018! In case you missed my top posts, book recommendations and favorite photos, scroll onward! My Christmas letter from last week details our family highlights, and newsletter subscribers will get the first peek of our new house on Wednesday so sign up if you’re interested! (Closing is today!!! And if you’re not a subscriber you can watch for photos in the next week’s Quick Takes.)

First up, my favorite reads of 2018. In general, I read fewer books this year (thanks War and Peace for eating up my fall) but as usual, my favorites are non-fiction. (Click the pics to go to Amazon and send some affiliate cents my way.)

When Books Went to War: The Stories that Helped Us Win WWII – Did you know books were considered so valuable to troop morale that they were printed in special copies to be sent to WWII troops around the globe? And often, printings couldn’t keep up with the demand? Men on the front considered the books essential, refusing to remove them from heavy packs, and many took time to write to the authors of their favorite titles.¬†

If At Birth You Don’t Succeed: My Adventures with Disaster and Destiny – Author Zach Anner was born with Cerebral Palsy, but this book isn’t a “Look at what I’ve accomplished and how inspirational I am!” type memoir. With a mix of brutal and hilarious honestly, Zach takes every idea of how a disabled person should act and flips it on it’s head. From running away to meet Cindy Crawford, to attending film school, to staring in a reality show, Zach tackles the stereotypes society throws at him and usually turns them into something hysterical.¬†

Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers –¬†Once again, the kids were questioning my sanity when they came across me reading this title; and they refused to listen to me sing it’s merits, or even consider some of the highlighted occupations. I found the chapter about crash test dummies to be the most eye opening.

Truvine: Two Brothers, A Kidnapping, and a Mother’s Quest: A True Story of the Jim Crow South – In the truth is stranger (and more horrible) than fiction category, falls this story about two albino African Americans who were kidnapped and displayed as circus freaks for 28 years while their mother tried to track them down. Even though slavery was technically illegal, it is amazing to see people treated as property, and whose value lied solely in their ability to make money for someone.

Next, my top posts of the past 12 months. Only one funny post mixed in there; I guess I’ve been writing less of the ridiculous stuff, and more deeply serious stuff…or something???

Lastly, I thought I’d share my Top Nine photo collage from Instagram. My activity over there comes and goes in spurts, but it’s clear that Fulton is a perennial favorite (thanks to major surgery updates) as are author announcements and random letter board sayings.

What were your top any and everything of 2018? Write it down then link it up below. Be sure to include a link back to this post so your readers can find the rest of the Quick Takes. I look forward to reading your posts!


  1. Mary Roach is a great author. I liked “Packing for Mars” and “Grunt” the most of her books – you should try them if you can find time. (And those titles will not raise eyebrows among your kids- unlike her book “Bonk”.)

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