Ashley’s Top Picks – Do Something for You

I’m back at it with another Top Picks list! This time I’ve got a handful of adult nonfiction titles to help you beat the winter blues with some self care. All of these titles encourage you to do something for yourself, whether it’s growing your own food, taking a drive, or setting new boundaries.

Each of the titles listed below are linked to our catalog so that you can easily place holds from wherever you are. Simply click on the cover image to jump directly to our library’s catalog.

“Melissa Urban has helped millions of people transform their relationship with food. Now, in this powerful and practical guide, she shows how boundaries—clear limits you set to protect your energy, time, and health—are the key to feelings of security, confidence, and freedom in every area of your life.

• Actionable advice to help you communicate your needs with clarity and compassion
• Tips for successfully navigating boundary guilt, pushback, pressure, and oversteps
• Techniques to create healthy habits around food, drink, technology, and more

User-friendly and approachable, The Book of Boundaries will give you the tools you need to stop justifying, minimizing, and apologizing, leading you to more rewarding relationships and a life that feels bigger, healthier, and freer.”

-From amazon.com

“Celebrate the season with this treasure trove of cozy cooking and baking recipes, from soul-warming soups and simple dinners to showstoppers and weekend projects.

As the air grows chillier and nights longer, these dishes draw us to the table and the warmth of an active kitchen: Slow-simmered dishes like Cider-Braised Pork Roast, cheesy weeknight pasta like Unstuffed Shells with Butternut Squash, or a crusty bread like Fig and Fennel Bread.

When the flavors of summer fade, autumn and winter fruits and vegetables can be just as bold and bountiful. Find recipe inspiration from the season’s first ripe figs and plump brussels sprouts to roasty sides featuring celery root, kohlrabi, and kabocha squash, or a cranberry curd tart to brighten a winter’s night.”

-From amazon.com

Four-Season Food Gardening hands you all the know-how you need to make growing food 365 days a year your new superpower!

Unlike most other vegetable gardening books on the market, this one approaches the subject through the lens of what you can grow during each of the four seasons, even if you live in a cold climate. Using season-extension techniques, such as cold frames, mini hoop houses, and thick mulches, combined with a thoughtful mixture of annual and perennial crops, you’ll discover that eating from your backyard through all 12 months is possible.

With a hearty dose of enthusiasm and expertise, author Misilla dela Llana of YouTube’s Learn to Grow channel presents this season-by-season guide to growing edible plants, covering everything from what tasks and what crops are best for each harvesting season to step-by-step DIY projects for structures and methods to temper weather extremes. With Four-Season Food Gardening you can keep on growing, no matter what challenges Mother Nature presents.”

-From amazon.com

Life is hard. But it gets a whole lot easier when you start to talk it out. In How Am I Doing?, you’re invited into a series of conversations with yourself to improve your mental health as you discover your purpose, honor your story, and explore who you want to be.

Dr. Corey Yeager, psychotherapist for the NBA’s Detroit Pistons and most recently featured on Oprah and Prince Harry’s The Me You Can’t See on Apple TV+, offers you 40 questions to help you raise awareness of your thoughts and emotions and reconnect with who you want to be.

Over the course of these 40 conversations with yourself, you’re invited to:

  • Build trust with yourself
  • Consider how past traumas affect your life today
  • Grow a practice of positive self-talk
  • Let go of guilt and regret from your past
  • Develop mental health strategies for what to for moments when you’re depressed or anxious
  • Increase your confidence and embrace your emotions

Each of the 40 questions is paired with a short, thoughtful reflection from Dr. Yeager, along with prompts and self-care strategies to help you look at yourself in the mirror and come into alignment with who you want to be.

So join the conversation; nothing is off-limits here. Come check in with yourself and take these small, simple steps to journey toward a more honest and harmonious way of living.”

-From amazon.com

Television personality Vanessa Lachey is a dedicated mom of three, a supportive wife to singer Nick Lachey, and someone who freely shares her “perfectly imperfect” home and family life. But like many people, Vanessa didn’t come from a family whose traditions were passed down from generation to generation. Her mom left when she was nine, and when she began her own family, Vanessa had to rely on her own imagination to create celebrations and milestone markers that would become annual rituals.

In Life from Scratch, Vanessa shares personal stories, ideas, delicious recipes, and parenting tips you can use to make your own celebrations unique and unforgettable. Inside you’ll discover the simple gift-giving custom Vanessa shares with her best girlfriends each year; the date-night tradition that she and Nick swear by; and her fool-proof recipe for “authentic” Chicken Adobo she serves to family and friends.

A fun, uplifting yearlong guide that celebrates families that color outside the lines, Life from Scratch will inspire people to make each season, and each special moment, their own.”

-From amazon.com

Hearing the words “be good to yourself first, then to others” was like being struck by lightning.

Many of us respond to the pressures of life by turning inward and ignoring problems, sometimes resulting in anxiety or depression. Others react by working harder at the office, at school, or at home, hoping that this will make ourselves and the people we love happier. But what if being yourself is enough? Just as we are advised on airplanes to take our own oxygen first before helping others, we must first be at peace with ourselves before we can be at peace with the world around us.

In this beautiful follow-up to his international bestseller The Things You Can See Only When You Slow Down, Zen Buddhist monk Haemin Sunim turns his trademark wisdom to the art of self-care, arguing that only by accepting yourself–and the flaws that make you who you are–can you have compassionate and fulfilling relationships with your partner, your family, and your friends. With more than thirty-five full-color illustrations, Love for Imperfect Things will appeal to both your eyes and your heart, and help you learn to love yourself, your life, and everyone in it.”

-From amazon.com

“From a vineyard route through Northwest wine country to a winter wonderland on Alberta’s Icefields Parkway, this informative travel guide offers epic sights, good bites, and pure fun. Pack your car and hit the road to experience 100 drives–both classic and off the beaten track–across the United States and Canada. You’ll find innovative itineraries outlining your route, along with when to go and what to see and do along the way. And there’s something here to satisfy every passenger. Take in the magnificent turns along Alaska’s Route One through Anchorage to Kenai. Or wind your way through retro spots from Chicago to Los Angeles on Route 66. On nearly 600 miles of New Mexico’s Trail of the Ancients, stop off to encounter sites dating back to A.D. 850. Or discover fossils along Dinosaur Drive, a route that winds its way from Calgary to Denver. Beach lovers will delight in Hawaii’s Oahu Circle Island Drive, while history lovers can follow Canada’s War of 1812 trail: a cruise between Montreal and Windsor with stops at major battlefields along the way.

Filled with expert tips, tons of activities, and plenty to see and do as you drive–the ultimate road trip playlist anyone?–here is an inspirational and practical keepsake for any road warrior.”

-From amazon.com

This list is just a quick start – there is so much more available! Consult a librarian at 315-785-7714 for tips or help on searching for other materials.

-Ashley