Five for Friday #48

Hello and happy Friday, friends! I’m so excited for this weekend because not only do I have a lot of fun things planned, but it’s by BIRTHDAY on Sunday!! And yes, I do have to work at a company user conference that starts Sunday afternoon, but I’ll still get to do lots of celebrating! As for the rest of the weekend, I have a ton on my plate. I’m getting a much needed haircut this evening, doing Zumba tomorrow morning (I’ve been going to Zumba a lot lately and I’m a little bit obsessed!), seeing the musical Anastasia tomorrow afternoon, and then going to church on Sunday before packing up and heading to the hotel for the conference! We have a bit of set up time before everything officially kicks off, and I plan on bringing in some birthday treats to share with my team as we get everything ready.

one || I am officialy obsessed with this J.Crew Factory skirt. I have multiple sidewalk skirts, but this one is SCALLOPED!!! Perfection! I’m trying to do as little shopping as possible this year but I can guarantee that this will be mine the second it goes on sale.

two || This movie looks like it will be really good! I don’t usually see movies in the theater (mainly because it’s so expensive now but also because people at the movie theater are generally pretty annoying), but I might end up seeing this one.

three || I mentioned that I’m getting my haircut this evening, and these popular 2019 hairstyles are giving me all sorts of inspiration! I have always been a fan of long layers…

four || Proud deatheater over here. You can’t just watch the movies and then have complaints about the story because most of those complaints are addressed in the books ok just read them! Or listen to them on Audible (which I’m currently doing right now!)

five || I’m not generally a HUGE lemon fan, but this Starbucks copycat lemon loaf is making my mouth water! It might be the icing. That icing looks REAL good. I’m almost done with my Whole30 stint (more on that next week!) and I might have to make this as a little post-birthday treat to bring into work!

That’s all for me – I hope you all have a great weekend and have a little birthday treat for me!

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2019 Book Bingo

A few years ago I created a reading bingo board to keep track of the books that I read that year, and while there really wasn’t a point to doing it, I REALLY enjoyed it! I made a resolution for 2019 to read 25 books throughout the year, and that is just the perfect number of books to go on yet another reading bingo board. I had a lot of fun thinking about what to put in each square and then trying to find what books I might get to read throughout the rest of the year.

Seeing as we’re halfway through February, I’ve already read a few books and marked off a few squares! Here are the books I’ve read so far in 2019:

For a book written by a celebrity I read The Actor’s Life: A Survival Guide. I have no interest in changing careers and moving to New York of Los Angeles to try and make it as an actor (tho 9-year-old Kelly really wishes I would!) but I love Jenna Fisher and it was fascinating to read about how she got started in Hollywood and just how much work, time, effort, and rejection goes into making a living as a performer. She did a great job giving out practical advice and sharing her wins and failures over the years.

For a book that was made into a movie, I read The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. I had a lot of friends that read this recently and so I thought I’d give it a go. It was… fine. One person in particular told me multiple times how this book was their all time favorite and the best book they read all year which REALLY made me build it up in my head. And ultimately it did not live up to my internal hype. It was a lovely story, yes, but I was just expecting… more? Yeah. I still want to watch the movie and see what is different and who knows, maybe I’ll like the movie better than the book!

For a book club pick I read The Last Mrs. Parrish. This was recently on Reese Witherspoon’s book club list, and I was in the mood for a story that might make my heart beat a little bit faster, and this one certainly got me amped up and feeling VERY anxious. It’s told kind of in two parts with one narrator in the beginning and a second narrator filling in the gaps in the second half of the book, and I love when books do that. It reminded me of Gone Girl a lot, how you read the first half and think you know everything, but then you switch narrators and you’re like OH OK I KNEW NOTHING. This book definitely made me think that every man is definitely a sociopath, and if you have any sort of abuse or trauma in your past romantic relationships, maybe skip this one. I was fine with it but I can see how it could be a little triggering for some people. I straight up told a friend “you should never read this book,” so just keep that in mind.

Just like with my 2019 resolutions, I created a page for my 2019 book bingo! You can click on the link at the top of my page and check in to see what books I’ve read and how far I’ve gotten with filling in my bingo card!

Recent Reads

Oh man do I have a lot of books to catch you all up on! I read a LOT over the past few months and honestly liked most of what I read! I feel like I’m at an age now where I’m 100% ok abandoning a book if I am not enjoying it. I even gave up on a few books and returned them to the library, which is something I would NEVER have done a few years ago! Of course I try to give a book a good chance, but sometimes you just have to let things go. I’m too busy to read bad books, and I love that feeling. So let’s dive in, shall we?

She Reads Truth

I had this one sitting on my shelf for longer than I’d like to admit, and I’m so glad I finally got around to reading it. The two authors (from the very popular She Reads Truth website and app, if you hadn’t made that connection yet!) share different stories from their lives and showed how no matter what the circumstance, God was always there with them and His word was always constant and a source of truth. “Sometimes it takes everything moving to notice the thing that doesn’t move. Sometimes it takes telling two very different stories to notice how the Truth was exactly the same in both of them.” I really enjoyed reading this and yes, it DID make me tear up while reading it on an airplane, but I highly recommend it!

Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine

This book had SO MUCH BUZZ and I felt like everyone had already read it, so obviously I had to read it, too! It’s about a young woman who struggles to fit in socially and isn’t really considered “normal” but she is completely fine with the way she lives her life. But then she meets a new friend at work and he brings her into his life and world and together she starts to repair what she didn’t even realize had been damaged. I did like this book… but also this book was kind of… a downer? It made me feel…. happy sad. So I liked it, but it also took a lot out of me to read it. So I recommend it, but also you have to be feeling pretty happy when you read it or else man it will not be a fun time! It’s going to be made into a movie that comes out next year, so you still have some time to read it before you see it!

The Lies We Told

I was in the mood to read a thriller, and was so excited when I found this one at the library. It follows a few different story lines and leads to the point where they all intersect and oooooooh it gets intense! I seriously couldn’t put this down and stayed up WAY too late reading because I just had to know what happened!!! There are mysteries, family secrets, people acting suspicious all over the place, people getting kidnapped, and more. I did see some of the “plot twists” coming, but there were enough things that honestly surprised me and I love when a book can just throw a twist at you like that!

The Kennedy Debutante

This was the very best kind of historical fiction! I seriously loved this one SO MUCH! I knew pretty much nothing about Kick Kennedy (JFK’s little sister) and now I know so much! This story focuses on her time living with her family in London and how she met the love of her life and eventual husband, Billy. It gave an interesting insight to real events and let me daydream along with Kick as she sauntered through London society before and during the war. It just made me really happy while reading it and sent me down a long Wikipedia path looking up all the people, places, and events that were talked about in the book!

The Wondering Years

One of my all time favorite podcasts is The Popcast with Knox and Jamie, and one of the hosts wrote a book! He is HILARIOUS on the podcast, and I knew before I even started this book that it would be hilarious and amazing, and guess what? I was right. He shares how he’s always had a love for pop culture and how those tv shows, movies, songs, and more helped him on his journey to learning more about God as he was growing up. I listened to this as an audiobook (because I’m so used to listening to Knox talk, anyway) and it was a good, short listen! Definitely read this book if you like celebrity memoirs but are up for reading one that isn’t written by a celebrity and it contains hilarious stories with a good overarching message!

A Lady’s Guide to Selling Out

While I didn’t hate this book, it honestly wasn’t my favorite one of the bunch. I might even say it was my least favorite of this bunch. Not the worst book I’ve ever read, but certainly not the best. This story follows Casey, who works at an ad agency, and basically is becoming a sellout. She is rising in her career but becoming a terrible person in the process, and then OH NO everything falls apart and she is left at rock bottom. She slowly starts to rebuild her life and finds out that being genuine is the way to go. It had a good ending, but honestly you can probably skip this one.

And now we’re all caught up from 2018! Have you read any of these before, or have any of them been siting in your TBR pile forever?

My 2019 Resolutions

Are you one of those people that pick a “word” for their year? A word to really embody everything that you want to focus on for the rest of 2019? I am DEFINITELY one of those people. I’ve chosen a word to represent my year for the past few years and loved it. When I was starting to think about what I wanted my word for 2019 to be, I really took a good hard look at how 2018 had gone and what I could improve on. And then it came to me immediately. My word for 2019 is: consistency.

I feel like I made so many great plans and goals for 2018 and then followed through with approximately 2 of them. It was bad. So looking into 2019 I wanted to focus on consistency and actually following through with the things I set out to do. So with that word in mind, I started to make my 2019 resolutions. I started with one. Then I added another. Then another. Then I added a LOT more and threw them on a bingo board because it seemed like a lot more fun that way!

I feel like I have a really good mix of practical and goal-oriented resolutions this year! Yes, I did pepper in a lot of things I was going to do anyway, like getting my hair cut and taking a fun trip with a friend… but it’s fun to cross things off of a bingo board so I just left them on there, anyway! I also wanted to make sure I had a good mix of specific resolutions (like reading 25 books) and kind of generic ones (like drinking less alcohol and soda. There’s no real way to measure that except to get to the end of the year and say yup I did that or nope my body is now made of 92% Dr. Pepper).

But back to my word for the year, consistency. Now that I made a lot of resolutions for the year, how on earth was I going to make sure I didn’t abandon them in March like last year? I was talking to a friend on the phone a few weeks ago and he suggested that I keep all of my 2019 resolutions on the desktop of my computer to look at often. And that’s exactly what I’m doing! I have the resolution bingo board as a PDF file on my desktop, and that’s the first thing I look at when I get to work on Monday. I go through all the goals one by one, and see what I can be doing to accomplish them and have the best year ever.

As another way to keep myself accountable and remain consistent this year, I made a 2019 resolutions page for the blog! I’ll update there when I cross something off, so you can follow along with me and make sure I’m actually being consistent! You can find it up in the banner at the top of the page!

And GUESS WHAT? I have a BLANK resolution bingo board just for YOU! So if you have been waiting for the year to get into a good rhythm to decide what you want to accomplish, then print this out and use it to crush all your goals for the year! Or hey – even if you hate resolutions or even if you already made yours in January like a normal person, it’s still fun and you should probably still use it.

 

Five for Friday #47

Hello and happy Friday, friends! I hope you’ve had the best week so far! My week has been nothing but work, work, work, and then some more work. It seems like a bunch of projects have popped up in the last week or so and they all seem to have a deadline of the end of December. And that would normally be fine, but with the holidays coming up, I’ve got vacations planned and other people have time off they need to take, too, and that makes it harder to get work done with everyone out of the office at random times!

But the work will get done, and the holidays will be wonderful, and then it will be a new year and I can’t wait for 2019! This time last year I had a TON of trips planned already, and right now I don’t think I have ANYTHING planned for the next year and that is making me really happy! I love that it means I can be spontaneous and take a trip whenever I want, or I can take my time and plan an epic trip for the summer or fall. I keep seeing cheap flights to Europe… so we’ll see what happens…

one || One of my favorite people to follow on instagram eloped recently and IT WAS STUNNING!!!!!!!!!!!! Like, I don’t think I’ve ever really had the desire to just run off and get married… but… if it could look like this… then yeah sign me up! And I LOVE how they surprised their friends and were like “hey guess what we’re getting married and we’re doing it in Europe and YOU’RE COMING WITH US!!!!” So stinking fun!

two || This article on how to read more books nails it. This is what I do and it makes such a difference! I read on my commute. I keep a book in my purse for down moments when I have unexpected spare time. I listen to audiobooks when I’m doing mundane tasks. I just love reading and books!

three || Nothing beats a good chocolate chip cookie. Thanks to Emily and her team for finding the BEST recipe out there!

four || Very much in love with this coffee mug. I don’t actually need more coffee mugs because I’m sure I have 5 too many as it is, but I actually might need this one.

five || Everybody needs to learn a little broadway slang! And it can’t get any better than coming from LMM.

Do you guys have anything fun planned this weekend? My parents are coming into town (hooray!) and we’ll just do a lot of hanging out and I can’t wait! I think we’re going to try and take our family Christmas card picture at some point, and my dad’s birthday is on Sunday so it will be good to celebrate him! Have a good one!