Thursday, August 31, 2017

August Reading Log

Wow!!! I read some amazing books this month.  I've been trying for days to think about which book was my favorite and to be honest I have a three way tie.  I absolutely loved All the Bright Places, Everything, Everything, and Inside the O'Briens A very close second would be Mrs. Mike

It is so hard to choose because I fell in love with the characters of all the books and I didn't want to stories to end.  I just wanted to know more, what happened next?  How did they go on? Where did they go from there?

All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven,  this young adult book deals with a serious subject, suicide.  Violet and Theodore's love story is amazing.  They come together in a very unlikely circumstance.   It sends a strong message to teenagers that their actions no matter how small can have an impact on others.  Think before you act!!! ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon, is another young adult book. This book is a story of first love between Maddy and Olly.  Of course it is not that easy,  Maddy is allergic is everything.  She is a girl that has to live in sterilized house.  No germs are allowed in the house at all.  She is a girl who lives through books and her computer.  Olly and his troubled family moves in next door to Maddy and their friendship grows from there.  "What would you risk for love?" is the question Maddy must face. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐   

The Five People You Will Meet in Heaven, by Mitch Albom, was about an old man, Eddie, who passes away and goes to heaven and meets five people.  You have to read a lot about his life to see how the five people fit into his life.  Eddie also works through a lot of his own relationships as well.  I had a hard time staying focused in this book.  There was so much background information that you had to read to get to the point.  I lost interest several times.  ⭐⭐⭐

From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, by E.L. Konigsburg, is one of my favorite books from my childhood.  I loved this book as a child and I decided to reread it.  I'm glad I did because I had forgotten a lot of details from the story.  The book is about Claudia and Jamie as they decided to run away to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City.  The sibling interaction is humorous and some of the details are funny because you know there is no way that could happen in modern times.  I still think it is a great children's book.  ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Inside the O'Briens, by Lisa Genova, is an amazing story about Joe O'Brien and his family.  It is a heart breaking story about how Huntington Disease takes away so much from you, your job, your friends, your respect, and your life.  As Joe struggles with all of this he has to live with the fact that he has passed this disease down to his children and possible grandchildren.  The book is just a great reminder to not judge people....treat others with kindness and respect.  ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

In the Unlikely Event, by Judy Blume, was an easy pick for me because I have always loved a book written by Judy Blume.  I have been reading her books since I was a little girl and I love that she is writing for adults.  The story is about a young girl, Miri, who grows up in Elizabeth, New Jersey.  In one year there are three different airplane crashes in their small town.  How does this affect the people in the town?  Miri and her friends and family are impacted by the crashed.  This is a good story as well.  ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Mrs. Mike, by Benedice and Nancy Freedman, is an amazing story of a young girl, Kathy, who at the age of 16 moves from Boston to Alberta Canada during the 1800.  She falls in love in Mike Flannigan, a Canadian Mountie, and move further North into the wilderness. Living in the wilderness has brings many friendships, challenges and tragic events.⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐  

The Lemonade War, by Jacqueline Davies, is another children's book I read based on a recommendation from Instagram.  It was a cute story about brother/sister jealousy.  It is also a good book to start a discussion about accepting others and working towards your personal strengths.  ⭐⭐⭐

The Prayer Box, by Lisa Wingate, is a wonderful story about a focusing on yourself and working hard.  Tandi is a single mother who is struggling raising her two teenage children.  She comes across some hidden boxes when cleaning out an old house and she discovers a whole new life for herself. My only disappointment with this story is that I thought is was going to some how tie together with The Sea Glass Sisters which is did not for me.⭐⭐⭐

The Sea Glass Sisters, by Lisa Wingate, is a short story that I thought was an introduction to The Prayer Box.  The story was about Elizabeth who is an overworked mother who is at the end of her rope. She is dealing with a lot and needs a break from life.  She goes on a road trip with her mother.  Dealing with her mother and her aunt things start to fall back in place.⭐⭐⭐

The Time Traveler's Wife, Audrey Niffenegger, is another great book. Clare and Henry have an unusual relationship.  Clare is an artist and Henry is a librarian and a time traveler.  As they attempt to live a normal life they face many challenges from Henry's uncontrollable time traveling. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ 

Waiting for Morning, by Karen Kingsbury, is what I would call Christian Fiction.  It is a story about both sides of drunk driving issue and turning away from your faith when you need it most.  It is a sad story and it tears at your heart because as a parent/wife it hits at your worst fear.  Even though I cried several times throughout the story, I felt the story was a bit repetitive and predictable. ⭐⭐⭐

Monday, August 21, 2017

A day with my husband and daughter.

My husband, daughter and I have been planning this day for months. Since Hamilton is not playing in our city yet, we knew we had to take a road trip.  So we planned to go to Chicago.  To save a little bit of money and get back home in time for work the next day we decided to go to a matinee.  

Going to a matinee in my opinion, did not take away from the experience.  Hamilton is an amazing play.  At first I wasn't sure I was going to like it because I was told it had rap music, but I really enjoyed the entire production.  The music and story was just wonderful.  I felt it had a bit of history in a humorous and diverse way.   

One of the smart things we did was we purchased our parking pass along with our tickets.  So we had reserved parking when we got to Downtown Chicago.  We didn't have to drive around and try to find a parking space.  That's a big deal when you are not familiar with the city.  We did have a slow drive home because we had to contend with rush hour traffic but once we were out of the city we found a place to eat and a relaxing drive home.  
We had a wonderful day together :)

Monday, August 14, 2017

The First Wall You See

This is the first wall you see when you walk in our house.  It is little and plain and it doesn't say much.  

I wanted to add something under the candle to welcome guests and let them know a little more about us.  I saw an idea on Pinterest and drew it out in my sketch book.  

It was super easy to put together.  I found a simple picture frame at Michaels that I liked and spray painted the glass with chalkboard paint.  

I drew the design on with pencil first and then traced over with the chalkboard marker.  

If you make a mistake the marker washes right off and you can try again.  

It is small and simple and I think it adds a little something to front hall and let's you know something about us. 

Monday, August 7, 2017

Bullet Journal Class Review

I found the class Bullet Journaling for Book Lovers by Anne Bogel from Modern Mrs Darcy in the Ultimate Bundles I purchased.  Two things really stuck with me, 1)  Make your Bullet Journal your own and 2) Keep journals for different topics.    

Well that was easy....I have many notebooks.  You could say I have a notebook addiction. I have my Bullet Journal for daily events, my school journal for lesson notes, my reading journal for book notes, my blogging journal for project notes, my book notebook for keeping track of books I'm looking for, my life journal that keeps my personal goals, my prayer journal, my Fruity Lemonade Blog Journal that I record stats and blog goals and ideas, The Very Busy Kindergarten Blog Journal that I record stats and blog goals and ideas and finally my art journal where I just draw and do lettering for fun.   

I am constantly fine tuning my daily Bullet Journal.  It is not a work of art like most bullet journals you see on line it is my life book.  I work in pencil in my journal because life changes and I need to be ready to change with it.  
This is my monthly blogging page.  I have two blogs and I try to post on Mondays.  I brainstorm ahead of time what I plan on posting so I know what to focus on during the week.  I found this to be very helpful.  Some day my goal is to get a couple weeks ahead of schedule but that has not happened yet.    
The monthly calendar and goal page are very helpful when I am planning out my weekly pages.  I love the monthly calendar it works well for me. It definitely keeps all my appointments and commitments in one place.   
 I tried a new layout in July and found it very busy to read.  It had all the areas I wanted to focus on but there was just to much on a page.  So I am going back to a simpler page layout.  
I wrote the headings in pencil and now that I am writing in my notes I think I will change that for September.  Headings need to be in marker so they stand out more.  
 I added two new pages as well for August.  A challenge page and a Instagram page.  I am trying desperately to get 10,000 steps a day into my daily routine. I added that in to my calendar.  I am also trying to build my instagram accounts.  I joined some challenges there as well.  I wrote down the expectations and I am hoping to follow them.   
 At the back of my journal I am keeping a visual track of the books I am reading while working in this journal.  It is very rewarding to me to see the books fill up each week. 

One thing I would like to add to my journal is a reflection page at the end of the month.  

Monday, July 31, 2017

July Reading Log

I started using Instagram last month and started following some avid book readers as well as following the blog Modern Mrs. Darcy and I have read many references to the Jane Austen books.  So I decided to find out what all the talk was about.  So I set out this the month to read all her books.  I found this cute set of books at Half Price books and started reading. As I expected the books her books are about romance however I didn't expect there to be humor in the books.  I don't think I am going to write a recap of the stories because most people have read the stories I just want to say I really liked all the books but I think Pride and Prejudice was my favorite.  Here is how I would rank the stories:
1.  Pride and Prejudice
2.  Sense and Sensibility
3.  Emma
4.  Northanger Abby
5.  Mansfield Park
6.  Persuasion

I found this fun little quiz Which Jane Austen Heroine Are You? Check it out it was fun to see which character was most like me.  Here are my results. It sounds pretty much like me.   

I read two other books this month.  First I read,  One True Loves by Taylor Jenkins Reid.  From the beginning you sort of know what will happen however it is so sad.  I cried several times throughout the story.  The book is hard to put down you just want to know what will happen.  How will Emma move on, who will she choose?  How can she choose?  I give this book ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐.  You will just love it.  

The other book I read was Why Not Me?  by Mindy Kaling.  This book was about Mindy telling it like it is in Hollywood and show business.  She wrote about several experiences from her life...blah blah blah....she is very funny but the story doesn't really go anywhere. Mindy has worked hard to get to where she is and she is very funny. That's what I got out of it.   I give it ⭐⭐.