If We Were Having Coffee

I saw a life coach I love, Ashley, do a post entitled If We Were Having Coffee and I decided to take her lead and do one myself in November 2013 because I loved it and sometimes I feel like we forget that there is a whole life behind the people that write and read blogs. I got such a great response to my initial post so I made it a  reoccurring thing for the past couple of years and do it when I feel so inclined!

 

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So, grab your coffee/beverage of your choice and meet me for a chat. Currently I’m drinking some La Croix…apparently I’m channeling my mom in the 90’s. I distinctly remember NOT liking this stuff as a kid.

 

If we were having coffee….I’d tell you that I’m currently reading Kids of Appetite by David Arnold. I’m literally on page 1 so I can’t tell you how it is but I’m super excited because I loved his debut Mosquitoland so much.

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If we were having coffee.…I’d tell you that I’m flabbergasted that we are in September. I feel like I say this all the time, “where did summer go?” “where did 2016 go?” but really. I was thinking about it the other day how when I was younger time really did seem a lot slower to me. I distinctly remember feeling like an hour was the whole day and the whole summer was an eternity until I could go back to school. Now I feel like an hour slips through my hands in a second and a whole summer can pass me by when I blink (no but seriously I had a whole list of fun things I wanted to do this summer and I did a quarter of them and WHAT HAPPENED?). Is it that I’m too aware of time and the fact it’s not endless and I’m desperate to hold on to it? Is it that I’m not living in the moment as much? Am I too distracted? Trying to do too many things? Not using my time wisely?  Whatever the reason is I’d really like to channel my younger self and see an hour as something that I can do a lot with. Now I think of an hour and feel like I can’t accomplish much in it (which sometimes because maybe I’m not 100% focused). I’d ask you if you are feeling like this summer or year in generally has flown.

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8 Ways I Use My Bullet Journal As A Reader & A Blogger

Ways I Use My Bullet Journal As A Reader & Book Blogger

 

Back in July I talked about how I started bullet journalling mid-month and here we are (well, as I write this) at the end of August and I have to say, with a full month of bullet journalling under my belt, that I really think this is a system that will work for me. Mine is super simple and not all pretty and creative but I would get way to hung up on that so a more simple approach definitely works for me. Literally the most I do is like use pretty colored pens — these ones actually. I’m using a journal that I had lying around (from one of my spontaneous journal purchases) so I would just get started with it but the pages are thin so the pens bleed through sometimes and I think I’d like to purchase one of these that are apparently all the rage in the bullet journal community.

I’ve found that I really like having all my lists in one place. I really like having the birthday calendar I made for each month to glance at every month to be more intentional about that. I made a tracker for some habits and things I want to work on because I am such a person who likes to check things off so it feels really nice to fill in my little bubble that I completed it for the day. It works SO well in helping me work on my goals.

I also have random pages I’ve really come to love like “Things To Look Up” because I always have random things that I want to research or look up and I always forget what they were. I love having various to-do lists in there but having a MASTER TO DO LIST that encompasses like everything — things I might not have a set start day for but that I want to do. It’s just a system that REALLY works. I don’t use all the things I see others do but I just put in it what I think I truly want and aligns with my life.

Anyways, I’m not at all an expert so this won’t be a post of tips or anything like that because I’m still a baby at this but I figured I would share things I’ve used it for as pertaining to my life as a reader and book blogger. (I highly suggest you check out Pinterest and just type in bullet journalling and you will find a wealth of info on how to start and ideas if you don’t know what it is and are curious if it would be a good system for you).

 

8 Ways I Use My Bullet Journal As A Reader and Book Blogger:

(no pics of these pages because like they are reaaaaaally ugly and not creative or fancy…just me writing these categories at the top of the page..maybe some little circles to track stuff. BOUT IT. Nothing to see. lol)

 

 

1. Books To Get From The Library: This might seem like a random one but EVERY FREAKING TIME I go to the library I know there are books I wanted to get out but I can’t remember half of them. And then I end up on Goodreads or on my library wishlist which is sooo inconvenient while I’m there but now I have a list that I can look at before I go or have in my purse while I’m there and, when I go to look for one, can make notes on if it’s in the library or if I will have to interloan library it.

2. Monthly TBRs: I’m always so off and on about doing Monthly TBRs on the blog or on Instagram so I really like that I can quick jot down a list of books I’m planning to read before the next month begins. It helps me remember any library books I have out or book club books or whatever. It also helps me when I can’t choose from what to read — even though, as a mood reader, I’ve totally thrown caution to the wind and gone off my TBR list…like a lot. I do like the idea of going through the notebook to see how many I actually ended up getting to.

3. Series To Finish: This has been SUPER useful for me. I was trying to keep track of it via a Goodreads shelf but it just got so hard to keep messing with and taking books off and putting them on and blah. This is great because I put all the current series I’m in the middle of and it’s so easy to cross it off if I finish or add a new series if I start one.

4. Comics I’m Reading: Pretty self explanatory. I like keeping track of what comic series I’m currently reading and make any notes to keep me updated when new stuff is released.

5. Reading Stats: I’ve never really kept many reading stats before in my life but I’ve been kind of curious to look at, especially after I wrote this post, what genres I’ve been reading. So for every book I read I make a little circle and then I fill it in with a color that corresponds to whatever genre it is (they are pretty loose genres because I’m simple). I also have been keeping track of some other stats like male authors vs. female that I’ve read and stuff like that. I would LOVE some other ideas for interesting things to track. I can see myself really tweaking this for next year based on what I find interesting/helpful to track.

6. Reading/Blogging Goals Progress: This is where I track these goals I make at the beginning of the year. It’s been really nice because I realized recently I’m SO visual when it comes to my goals and I like seeing the progress I’ve made (or not made). When I make goals and resolutions I typically forget about a lot of ones or they get pushed back but having this page (and doing my mid-year check-in) helps me sooo much. I need it right in my face.

7. Blog Post Idea Dump: This is where I literally just brain dump even the dumbest ideas for the blog. I’ve seriously filled sooo many pages. Before I would have tons of scraps of papers and random notesbooks with ideas jotted down, a notebook on Evernote (my faaave digital note-taking system), 100s of unfinished drafts in WordPress with post ideas and like one sentence for what I wanted that post to be. I’ve made this new system where I now use this to dump every idea (and it’s typically always with me) and then I only put the winners in my Evernote notebook that I actively want to work on and KNOW what I want to do with. Sometimes I still go for my Evernote if I’m on my phone and it’s more convenient to type into my app but I always transfer it to my bullet journal. I think this has also helped me do some brainstorming OFF LINE. I can take my notebook and really develop or brainstorm the ideas further without sitting on my computer looking at Evernote and getting easily distracted. DEFINITELY a winner of a system for me.

8. Blog Improvements: This is where I put more administrative/maintenance and behind the scenes blogging stuff — aka all the things I hate and put off for forever. Things like “make my about me page prettier” “go back or format/make prettier graphics for old posts that still get lots of traffic”  or  “figure out WHY THE HELL my email notifications when I get comments on my blog are no longer working” — still haven’t figured out that one. I miss getting individual emails every time someone comments..always made my day to read them throughout the day.

Things I might like to implement:

Books Read In X Year: I was too lazy to go back and list all the books I read from January through July when I started this but next year I would like to keep a list of books I’ve read throughout the year. I have Goodreads for that when I want to glance over but sometimes I just like that stuff written down.

Quotes: I already have a dedicated quote notebook that I’ve used for yeaaaaars so I’m still waffling if this is something I want to also go in this notebook. Maybe I could use this because I always have it with me and then transfer it to my quote notebook?? IDK IDK.

Books Recommended By Friends/Elsewhere: I typically just auto-add to Goodreads but sometimes I like to keep track of just WHO recommended it. I know I can do that on Goodreads but I’m not sure if I can do that from my phone and also it’s REALLY hard to find someone with the auto-fill in especially if they have a popular name. Especially for my New to the Queue posts it might be helpful to remember why I added something to my TBR — like from a person I know, a magazine I saw it in, a blogger whose post I saw it in that piqued my interest.

 

Soooo that’s what I’m currently using it for as it pertains to reading stuff and book blogging! It’s probably not that super interesting and I probably do not make bullet journalling all that appealing because I don’t have pretty stuff (seriously go search on instagram and Pinterest) but I’ve really enjoyed the system and will keep going with it!

 

Do you bullet journal? What kind of reading related or blogging stuff do you put in yours?

 

Monthly Rewind: August 2016

recap book blog

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What I’ve Been Reading Lately

book recommendations and books to read

 

As I’ve mentioned before I’ve been reading rather slowly and not as often this summer but I feel like I can feel my typical reading habits coming back a bit which is nice. What have you guys been reading?? Tell me in the comments!

 

First up for me was:

 

 

Unscripted Joss Byrd book cover

Unscripted Joss Byrd by Lygia Day Penaflor

I received this for review consideration from the publisher but these opinions are all mine…pinkie swear!

 

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Books To Read Before The Movie Comes Out (Rest of 2016/Early 2017)

As a book lover I do tend to like to read a book first before I watch the movie. “We can’t see this movie because I haven’t gotten to the book yet” being one of a few annoying bookworm things my husband is probably sick of hearing me say. I don’t ALWAYS get to the books and sometimes give up and watch the movie depending on how interested I am but for the most part, if I’m super interested in the book, I’ve GOT to get it read before the movie. A lot of it is because it takes me more time to read a book than it does to watch a movie so I’d rather do that and THEN see how it’s translated on the big screen…even if I already know the plot twists and what happens. I’d be way less likely to watch a movie and then go back and read a book knowing what happens — except maybe in extreme cases where I know the book has WAY more detail and is markedly different.

Guide to books to movie adaptations 2016/2017

Your Guide To Book-to-Movie Adaptations for 2016/2017

 

(I’m curious about your book to movie habits!! Let me know in the comments.)

ANYWAYS, here’s a list of book to movies coming out during the rest of 2016 and early 2017!

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Shelves of Shame

Today I’m talking about the shame that resides on my shelves — aka the books that I’ve owned since before I became a blogger in 2010 but STILL haven’t read. And it’s a lot more than 10 but I’m only going to talk about 10 of them and maybe you could tell me which ones I should seriously stop delaying. I feel like a lot of these are still unread because my reading tastes have evolved SO MUCH since before I was a blogger. As part of my whole bookshelf revamp project, I recently went through and actually officially got rid of some of them that had been on my shelves for even longer than 6 years because I was honest with myself about my interest towards them. PLUS, I figured I can always go get them out at the library if my interest is piqued again.

So, here we go….my list of shame:

 

Owned & unread books

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17 Summer Must-Reads

books to read this summer

books to read this summer

 

Every time we hit mid-August, I panic. It means summer is almost over and I’m just….not okay with that as a person who LIVES for summer and spends most of the other seasons huddled under blankets. Even at 30 years old, I very distinctly see the end of summer as when it’s back to school time (hand raise if you actually miss going back to school. Me!). But HONESTLY…we still have until mid-September before summer is officially over. I feel like by THAT point it’s always FUHREEEZING here (okay full disclosure anything below like 75 is freezing to me) in Pennsylvania but I’ve been trying to remind myself that I have at least a month left of summer to soak in.

This time in August is ALSO that time in which I find myself trying to CRAM in all that summer reading while my pool is still open and the weather is still pleasant enough to sit outside in the sun. So, if you are like me and are trying to squeeeeze every last bit out of Summer that you can…I can help you with the books you absolutely should try to squeeze in before the official end of summer (you know, as if you couldn’t read them any other time).  I mean, suuuure this might be aiming high to think we can get all this summer reading done before the end of summer BUT I’ve never met a reading challenge I didn’t like.

I’ve made of mix of books I’ve already read and think are the absolutes to get to this summer and some that are on MY list of summer reads to finish before the worst day of my life the end of summer. So, don your bikini and a floppy hat (don’t forget that sunscreen!)….we’ve got some summer reading to do, friends!

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What I’ve Been Reading Lately

book recommendations and books to read

 

I’ve been a pretty slowww reader these summer months but I’m feeling the urge to really be reading again and I’m excited. This is why I always let my reading desires ebb and flow because sometimes I just need to read a lot less/slower and enjoy other things! I always end up coming back to reading consistently. What have you guys been reading?? Tell me in the comments!

 

First up for me was:

 

 

The Changeling Sea by Patricia K. McKillip

The Changeling Sea by Patricia A. McKillip

 

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Whatcha In The Mood For? // The Romance (Or Lack Of One) Edition

book recommendations for what type of book you are looking for

 

It’s that time where I dole out recommendations according to what kind of mood you might be in at random — whether that be an actual mood or a specific type of book. Check out past Whatcha In the Mood For recs!

 

I would LOVE LOVE LOVE if you could also leave some recs for my categories in the comments to further help people looking for books that fit! Also, have a good idea for a category or something you have been looking for? Leave it in the comments!

This time I decided to do a sort of theme around my mood reads. Normally they are ALL over the place but I decided to do some romance-themed moods in honor of mine and Will’s 4th wedding anniversary which is TODAY! 🙂

 

 

Pining for a YA with little to no romance?

 

Outrun the Moon stacey lee

Outrun the Moon by Stacey Lee

Why? Oh man this historical fiction was a good one! There is a teeny thread of romance but it kind of bookends the novel in a way so the majority of this book is more so dealing with the boarding school, friendships, the earthquake and their life in the aftermath. That teeny thread is very impactful but I definitely think this one is a refreshing one for people who are looking for a romantic relationship that isn’t really the main thread of the novel. You can check out all my thoughts on Outrun the Moon.

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To Savor Or To Binge? That’s Literally Always The Question.

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For as long as I can remember I’ve always been a binge watcher/reader. Whether it’s a show on Netflix that I love or a book I’m obsessed with I just cannot control the impulse to stop my entire life and do nothing until I finish it. It’s a thing that Will and I “fight” about when we are watching a show together and I’m like, “WOOOO 10th episode in a row LET’S KEEP GOING ALL NIGHT” (that’s what she said, amirite?) and he’s like OH DEAR GOD WE NEED TO STOP RIGHT NOW THIS IS MADNESS. I dive in head first and don’t come out until I’m done and then have the biggest hangover ever and feel depleted emotionally depending on the show. I LOVE IT. Definitely with shows it’s always been this way — even before Netflix I remember my college roommate and I getting stuck in show vortexes even without Netflix auto-playing it and having to get up to put a new disc in. Which is #dedication.

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