5 Indie Books I Read + Loved

5 Indie books I read and loved | Big City Quiet

I truly believe that indie authors need to support one another, which is why I was more than happy to purchase and read these books.

1. The Book of Brave – I’ve been a big fan of Laura Jane Williams ever since I discovered her on thought catalog. Her brutal honesty about life, love, work and sex is absolutely refreshing. The moment I heard about her book I got on my computer and purchased it. The Book of Brave has something for every woman; it is a collection of stories and reflections on how Laura came to love herself, and how she continues to fight for that love every single day. It is a truly inspirational read.

2. These Are The Moments – #TATM isn’t a book I would usually pick up, but I am a follower of Jenny Bravo’s blog, Blots & Plots, and really just wanted to support her. I don’t leave many book reviews, but I felt so compelled to write her one, because that’s how much this book surprised me. I found her characters loveable and very relatable and am looking forward to her prequel.

3. Something Like The Desert – I am quite literally in awe of Kristen; from the way she lives her life with such intention and presence, to her truly incredible words; she is a real treasure. I absolutely loved this book and pull it off of my bookshelf often, devouring her stories in a different way each time.

4. Coming Clean – I read this on my kindle months ago and it was one of those books that I couldn’t bear to put down. It’s a memoir of Kim’s life growing up trying to hide the fact that her parents are hoarders. So. Very. Good. And also one of Amazon’s top 100 books in 2013.

5. The Unfolding: A Collection of 21 Tiny Tales – This is such a lovely small book of stories, which now sits on my bookshelf next to Something Like The Desert. The tales feel familiar and heartwarming and I’m certain that I will come back to this book often as months go by.

Do you have a morning routine?

I’ve always been a morning person. BC (before child) I could basically make my mornings look however I wanted them to, but with a two year old running around, I have to be more deliberate with how I spend my time. These days my mornings usually look a little something like this: I set my alarm for 5am and lay in bed for a few minutes to brush off the sleep and wake up. I’ll pad downstairs and make myself a cup of coffee or tea and then sit down to write until my son wakes up anytime between 6:15 and 6:45am.

In order to start my day off on the right foot, it’s so important that I get a slow and quiet start to my mornings, because from the moment my son gets up until I go to bed at night I am go go go with mothering, work, meal preparations, cleaning, personal projects and time with my husband. I find that the days that my morning coffee and a read/writing are cut short, I’m less patient and just all around unfocused.

So that’s my simple morning routine. What’s yours like?

Project Life 2015 | July

It’s a #projectlife bonanza today as I’m sharing all of my July spreads!
To end my first album, I took a photo of my family in the same spot, but with our backs to the camera to signify an end. I stamped “bye June” using the same #kelliestamps alpha set as below.

For my album two title page I captured us from the front (to signify a beginning) a stamped “hello july” using probably my favorite stamp set ever, “Stand Tall” from #kelliestamps which is available for pre-order now!


Here’s a look at my first July spread. I’m loving that big #kelliestamps date stamp.

 And my second July spread, one of my absolute favorite spreads I’ve yet to put together in my three years of doing project life. Helllloooo Ali Edwards “thick day” stamps and “A Man’s World” Themed cards.


My third July spread, in which I used even more Ali Edwards “thick days” stamps to make filler cards!


 And my fourth and final July spread, using the new artiste papers from Paislee Press.

 That’s it for July guys!

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* Project Life is a product, system and a lifestyle created by Becky Higgins. In 2015, I’m creating a spread for each week of the year. Here are all of my pages from 2013, 2014 + 2015.

Project Life 2015 | June Three + Four

Still playing catchup on sharing my spreads here on the blog. These two spreads are from the second half of June. Plenty of swimming, iced drinks and lots of writing.

 Left side

 Right side. Definitely loving using Ali Edwards digital stamps for filler cards.

I love how it looks in the album. So much blue.

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Products Used: Design G, Studio Calico 9×12 page protector, A Man’s World Theme cards, Moments Like These cards (recolored), Elise Joy stamp (no longer sold)

And on to the final spread of June, wherein I used even more Ali Edwards digital pieces and some new #kelliestamps stamps!

 Left side

Right side

And here’s how it looks in the album. That yum stamp? Love.

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Products Used: Studio Calico 9×12 page protector, Design A, Midnight Edition,  Kellie Stamps “On Fleek”, Ali Edwards digital stamps.

* Project Life is a product, system and a lifestyle created by Becky Higgins. In 2015, I’m creating a spread for each week of the year. Here are all of my pages from 2013, 2014 + 2015.

August 1

When we bought this chair I used to sit in it in the darkness of the freshly painted nursery, rubbing my seven month pregnant belly and wonder what it would feel like to nurse my son right in that spot. And once we stopped nursing I thought about how it would feel to sit with him on my lap and read to him in that chair. Now I catch glimpses of what he will look like as he grows and uses that chair for other things like reading on his own, listening to music, maybe just sitting and enjoying life.

This morning we heard him playing in his room but things had gotten quiet so I poked my head around the corner to see him sitting there, his one leg tucked against his chest, his blanket in a bunch on his lap, his hands crossed just so, the light filtering in from the window beside him…

He just looked so beautiful that I ran for my camera, actually sprinting down the stairs and back up again, so happy to have captured this moment. I will hold it forever in my heart.