My 5 All-Time Favorite Reads

If you haven’t read these books then there will most likely be spoilers ahead.

Books have always been a huge part of my life. I love the suspense they bring and that you can take yourself to a completely different world. There are so many books and authors that have inspired me to write and it’s why English was my favorite subject in school! I loved writing essays, had a poetry phase, and wrote some short stories myself (I will count fan fiction as well because yes, I wrote fan fiction. I’m a huge nerd so it was expected).

I wanted to share with y’all some of my favorite books that I’ve read throughout my life and why I’ve loved them so much!

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  1. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling — Hands down my favorite book of the series. I loved the story line and all the detail that went into the book. This was the story that really changed things in Harry’s life! Sure he fought Voldemort a few times and dealt with dementors but this is the book where EVERYTHING changes. I love it so much that I was actually pretty disappointed with the movie. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE the movies and do love HPATGOF, but honestly they could have done so much better. It’s hard going from book to movie because it can’t all be the same but it just bugs me when huge plots are changed! Anyway, this is definitely my favorite book and love J.K. Rowling in every way.
  2. The Hunger Games: Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins — My aunt got me started on this series and I finished it insanely fast because I loved it so much. I read Catching Fire specifically in just one day! Reading it as a teenager, I definitely was loving the romance heating up between Katniss and Peeta – what girl wouldn’t fall in love with Peeta?! What really grabbed my attention was all the new characters and twists to the Games. Suzanne Collins brought in so much more to this world that I was craving to know more! And as I said before, I’m a huge lover of plots and plot twists. They’re just so intriguing and enticing that it really is impossible to put the book down.
  3. Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Picoult — Jodi Picoult is one of my all time favorite authors. I really love the way she writes and what she write about it – it’s extremely real. I read this book in my early teens and would advise caution reading this as it involves multiple sensitive issues. The main plot of the book is a high school shooting. We follow a character who tries to understand the events leading up to this unfortunate terror and how it starts to change her own views of herself. Jodi Picoult has an amazing way of describing the characters and scenes that you truly feel you’re there with them yourself.
  4. Divergent by Veronica Roth — Okay so, yes, I have a favorite genre of books ~ What I loved about Divergent is that it took post-apocalyptic to a whole different level. Every member of society is divided into “factions” based on their personality types until one girl’s is questioned. It’s enticing and wonderfully written that you won’t want to put the book down! And yes, as suspected, there is a romance and it is everything. Honestly as far as young adult book romances go, this one is my favorite. I highly recommend this trilogy!

*Spoiler-ish alert – The last book I read in a day and was crying at 2am because of the end – prepare yourself*

  1. The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien — A book that literally needs no introduction. I will admit I have not read the full LOTR trilogy because of the length but I have started the books. The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit  are my most favorite books + movies of all time. (I have 4 LOTR tattoos and I’m currently planning for a full sleeve!) The Hobbit is a perfect starter because 1 – it’s the beginning of it all and 2 – it truly is an easier read. Tolkien wrote this book as a bed time story for his children so you’ll find that it’s very descriptive. Nerding out real quick – there were some hardcore fans that complained that Peter Jackson messed up The Hobbit movies by adding more of his creative expression in some scenes. Seriously, I think a lot of people forgot about the intentions of the book and that if you were to go back and read the scenes that were “messed up”, Tolkien gave zero detail (ie. The final battle). Anyway! I highly recommend even if you’ve seen the movies.

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I’m always looking for new reads! Drop your suggestions below for me 😊

5 Sustainable Products I Use

I’ve been getting really into sustainability lately and have been researching different things I can use around my home. I’ve made some small adjustments but my since I live with my mom she’s not super open to all the changes I want to make, haha! Slowly but surely I’ve been changing her mind.

My family has always recycled, my grandma had a compost, and when we moved to California, we started using reusable bags. In Minnesota plastic bags are literally everywhere and you don’t get charged for them. It was a total shocker to me when we moved here that plastic bags were a huge no-no.

Since moving to California, I’ve started using the reusable bags and taking my own water bottle wherever I go (added bonus for theme parks because you don’t have to spend ridiculous amounts on water). I’ve also been trying to using glass containers for my leftovers, refusing straws and restaurants, and packing my own silverware for lunches instead of using the plastic silverware at work.

I’ve listed below some sustainable products I’ve started using and LOVE!

 

  1. Bamboo Cotton Swabs I use cotton swabs every time I shower and sometimes when I do makeup so it can get pretty wasteful! These are perfect for sustainability because they’re eco-friendly and they’re biodegradable! They get the job done perfectly as well.bamboo
  2. Sustainable Lunch Bags A lot of the times for lunch I pack sandwiches or snacks and using plastic Ziploc bags is a waste! I found these ones that come in 3 different sizes and they’re all dishwasher safe! They’ve worked beautifully and the fun designs make it that much better.baggies.png
  3. Zero Waste Makeup Remover Rounds These have been life changing! I switched completely from makeup wipes to using micellar water to remove my makeup. My face has been looking so much better and it’s more eco-friendly! These rounds are machine washable and can be used hundreds of times! The cute bag it comes in keeps them organized and it also includes a pouch to place them in when they’re ready to be washed. I’ve used these both for removing makeup and applying other things to my face such as witch hazel. It does advise to not use for removing nail polish as they do not work together.makeup.png
  4. Metal Straws A go to item for every sustainable human! I especially use these when I take my tumbler to Jamba Juice or Starbucks so I don’t waste a plastic cup or straw!straws
  5. Reusable Produce Bags I keep these packed with my reusable bags so that they’re in the same place and always ready for the grocery store!bags.png

 

I have plans for more sustainable products soon! These will include: a bamboo toothbrush(using my last plastic one now!), sustainable laundry detergent and fabric softener, and silicone stretch lids. Let me know what sustainable products you use in the comments below!

New Year’s Resolutions!

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

We have officially reached 2019. Another year has come and gone and now it’s time to start it all over again. Resolutions have always been hard for me. I try to go above and beyond and start out really well but then burn out a month or two in. The goals I try to do now are pretty simple and I try to have them benefit my mental health as much as possible. One year, I wrote down on a slip of paper everything that made me happy. All the slips would go in a jar. On New Year’s Eve, I opened the jar and read about all the happy moments I had in the year. There were a lot of emotions: some made me cry, some made me happy, and some made me mad. Overall I rather enjoyed it as it was a nice reminder of all the good things in life.

blog post_ NY Resolutions

  • Start and finish school
    • School has never been my first choice. I tried a few classes here and there after high school but was more focused on my career. A few months ago I made the decision to go back. I didn’t want to take any time off work so I looked into online programs. I am now enrolled at University of Phoenix with a certificate program. This allows me to be done in about 6 months. I start my first class middle of January and while I’m looking forward to it, I’m also terrified!
  • Create a daily routine for myself and stick with it
    • There’s so much going on in my life that it’s hard to keep myself disciplined with certain things. Now that I’m adding school to my hectic schedule, I created 2 daily routines for myself: one for when I do work and one for when I don’t. I’ve created a basic outline for both of what I imagine will work best but I plan to make adjustments once I actually start school.
  • Continue therapy
    • It’s hard asking for help. It’s taken me a long time to ask for help, even with my own friends. I constantly feel like such a burden to everyone in my life and I don’t want to think that way anymore. I’m tired of letting my mental health take over so many areas of my life. I’ve started taking medication again as I know I truly need it. With therapy, I hope to overcome some issues and to learn how to live with my anxiety in a more positive way rather than negative.
  • Create a budget
    • I budget my bills pretty well. I always pay on time and make sure I have enough for everything. This year I’m making a new goal for myself with my budget. As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, I still live with my mom. Living in California is expensive enough with roommates and can be near impossible by yourself. With this budget I want to go into as much detail as possible in every aspect of my life so I can see where I can save more and spend less.
  • Learn to be more assertive
    • I am not an assertive person. I feel like there are times that I am but generally I’m a pushover. It’s hard for me to say no to people(especially authoritative figures) and if I feel like I’ve been wronged or my feelings are hurt, I won’t address them with the person. I continue to let myself be “used and abused” over and over again until I start to break. This year I want to push myself to be more assertive. I don’t want to continue putting myself in uncomfortable situations just because I feel like I should. If something bothers me with a friend or relative, I want to be up front about it so they understand their actions and how it affects me.

 

This year I want to focus on me. I never put myself first in any situation and now is the time to. It’s time for me to break out of my comfort zone and explore endless possibilities for myself!

 

Tell me about your resolutions in the comments!