Today’s Month of Faves prompt is Best Changes You Made To Tweak This Year #AMonthofFaves – best changes you made or routines you kept that to better organize your day / life; your = morning, evening or daily routines.
I had a hard time with this topic because I cannot think of any little things I’ve done this year since this has been a year of such BIG changes. I moved across the country, I sent my daughter off to college, I sold my house, etc. I mean, it was just a lot.
But if I had to put into words what the tweak I made this year, I would have to say that it has been my willingness to try things out and give them a chance. Things like not having a car or…that’s really all I can think of right now.
I also really did try to keep myself focused on doing things one step at a time. I applied for the job. I went on the interviews. I waited to see what would happen before planning my next move. That is huge for me. Before, I would have already found a place to live BEFORE I even got called for an interview. This time, I waited until I had an in person interview to look at places to live–and that was mostly because I knew I wouldn’t be able to make a special trip to look at housing.
I also learned to ask for help in a really big way, something I wouldn’t have done before, and it really did make my life so much better.
The end is near, y’all.
I haven’t finished any books this week, so here is a general update:
1. I had my first houseguest(s) on Sunday! I volunteered to host my writing group, so host I did. Only one of the women was able to come because the other was sick. However, I still had two guests because the woman who did come had her mom meet her at my place.
So now, my house* is officially clean.
*Except for my bedroom
For today’s Something on Sunday, I want to give a shout-out to my pharmacist, Albert. The past couple of times I went to my neighborhood CVS (I know) to get my prescription filled they didn’t have it. And the last time I went, I said to Albert, I said, “You never have it.” I was clearly very disappointed in him and the store and life in general.
He apologized (again) and sent my refill over to another CVS (again).
So yesterday, I had on my to-do list to call the other CVS to get my refill sent to my neighborhood CVS. And this time I was doing it a week in advance to give them time to get it together.
Before I could call, I got a text from my neighborhood CVS saying my prescription was ready. This surprised me because I don’t have any of my prescriptions on autofill (autofill stresses me out), but then I remembered I probably just forgot to tell them to opt me out of it.
But no! When I went into the store, Albert said, “Hi, Ms. [LastName]. It’s ready!” (Yes, Albert knows me by name and by sight. This isn’t even the best part, yet.)
When the tech handed me the prescription, I let out a little gasp of delight. It turns out Albert had ordered my refill for me IN ADVANCE, and he also gave me a THREE-MONTH refill instead of a one-month one, AND he said that they have extra on the shelf now, so they’ll be ready for when I come back.
Albert rocks, y’all. May you all find a pharmacist like Albert.
Today’s A Month of Faves topic is pretty straightforward: books that are worth the hype! Or maybe not.
Let’s start with books worth the hype:
Hey, so, I was very reluctant to read this book because the topic is pretty triggering, and I wasn’t sure I could handle it. And while, yes, the book starts with Khalil’s murder and the topic is serious, there’s a lot of humor and heart to this book. It’s not a problem novel (Google it), but Thomas offers real and nuanced characters who have real and nuanced reactions to real things.
Today’s Month of Faves topic is blogging!
Essential Computer Programs, Browser Plugins, Websites and / or your blogging routine, blogs on blogging that you follow, blog tips you learned and used this year
In general, I try to post at least once a week, using It’s Monday What Are You Reading as a guide. My IMWAYR posts got way better once I read this post during Bloggiesta and started incorporating more actual life stuff in them. I find that using IMWAYR as a signpost works because (a) I want to talk about what I’m reading and (b) this is a low pressure way to do it. This started as a book blog, but I am terrible at writing long-form book reviews, so mini-reviews + life stuff + probably also some TV stuff works best for me.
Aside from that, this year was all about blogging challenges/events. I did Slice of Life, Blogging from A to Z, NaBloPoMo, and now, of course, A Month of Faves. I also participate in Something on Sunday when I can because it helps keep me on track with gratitude.
I do well with structure, basically.
I also started bringing back the “[x number of] Random Things,” which I stole from Abby20 on LiveJournal many moons ago (she did 13; I do however many suits me). That works when I want to post about things, but have no idea where to start or what I want to cover. (I have also started numbering my IMWAYR posts as well because I LOVE LISTS. The end.)
Anyway, this year I may have overextended myself on blogging challenges (esp. the monthly ones) so may need to take a step back. But! Daily blogging is a good exercise in discipline and also writing, so, you know. Maybe not.
1. It is so good, y’all. So so good. I can’t wait for everyone to see it on Thursday. It’s super funny and just a delight (of course). Also, Maggie Lawson is a badass and I freaking love Juliet. (I feel a Juliet appreciation post coming on.) In conclusion, the movie did not disappoint at all.
The premiere event was fun. I got a trivia question right (“Who gave the Blueberry its name?”) so won some swag. And it was just so awesome to sit in a room full of fans who were all excited about seeing those two goofballs on screen.
2. While I was waiting in line, I finished a book:
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I really liked this. As the mother of a child who has anxiety, a lot of the stuff Aza said sounded very familiar. I will also say that I got a real sense of Aza’s OCD and just how trapped by her thoughts she was. That was very well done. I also appreciated that this was a lot less precious than some of John Green’s more recent novels and that the love interest was actually a pretty down to earth kid.
Imma just go ahead and copy and paste my opening from last year to this post: It’s time for A Month of Faves, one of my favorite blogging events! I don’t know about you, but I neeeeeeed some cheer and joy in my life right now. I’m so so happy that Tanya, Andi, and Tamara are hosting this again. SO MUCH YAY.
As most readers of my blog know, I made a huge life change this year and moved from Florida to California. This was a year of big changes for many other reasons as well, one of which was my daughter’s high school graduation.
So here are my favorite things that happened this year (that I can remember; I’m sure I’ll think of more after I hit publish. Or wake up tomorrow):
1. I got a new job and moved to California where I have always wanted to live.
2. My daughter graduated from high school.
3. I am ibuprofen-free.
4. I scored AP exams.
5. I got to go to Jasmine’s for Thanksgiving, finally. (We had been trying to coordinate this for years!)
6. I learned to actually and truly ask for help.
Here are a few of my favorite things that I own/have that are new to me:
1. My new apartment is pretty baller. And it has a fireplace, which means I can actually hang stockings over a fireplace for the first time in my life.
2. My friend Maggie sent me a bike, and it is magnificent. The guys at the bike shop (where I took it to get put together) said that everybody who came in was eyeballing it and kept trying to buy it. Also, it’s a Schwinn, which means that every time I look at it, I think of the exchange from Girls Just Want to Have Fun between Drew and Natalie:
Drew: Nice car. I drive exotic wheels myself.
Natalie: What is it? A Schwinn ten-speed?
She’s being snotty, which is her way, but that was one of my favorite movies growing up so it’s nice to have the reminder.
As I mentioned earlier, I learned to ask for help this year, and I received it from so many people, and I am so so so thankful. I appreciate everyone who was so gracious and giving and kind. My move would not have been possible without them. I also got to connect with so many people in Gainesville before I moved, and that was wonderful.
Also, I have to give a shout-out to two women who really made my year so much better: my friends Holly and Amber. I really just cannot express how much they both touched my life this past year.
While I am naming names, I also want to thank my girl TNT for texting me almost every day and keeping me connected, especially those days I felt super lonely because I didn’t really know anybody out here yet.
Which means I also have to say how grateful I am for the new friends I have made here or the online friends I finally got to connect with in person (yay internet friends who are now RL friends).
So a lot in the world is terrible right now but so much in my everyday life is not. And for that, I am truly grateful.
1. I didn’t “win” NaBloPoMo because I missed a day, but 29 out of 30 ain’t bad. Memo to self: write posts the day before and schedule them to go live the next day. That’s how I was successful at the Slice of Life challenge this past March.
2. I forgot to link up to all my posts from last week on my Monday post, so here they are now:
- It’s Tuesday! I’m reading some things.
- My Secrets for Waking Up Early
- The Book I’m Most Thankful For (2017)
- 2017 Christmas Wish List
- Back to the grind
- #SomethingonSunday: Grateful for Gratitude
- It’s Monday and I’m going to a screening of Psych the Movie!
- Broken streak, broken dreams
3. There will be a part two to the Christmas wish list, but only because it’s getting cold and I realized I need gloves and some other such like.
I missed posting yesterday because I fell asleep at 6:30 and didn’t wake up until about 1:45. Then, I drank some water and ate some food before going back to bed. I wasn’t feeling that great yesterday, so I obviously needed the rest, but I hate that I blew my streak.
Also, and probably more importantly, I missed a day of grading so am even farther behind. (I was going to put “further,” but I am behind by a quantifiable amount. Also, I strongly advise not counting how many papers one has left to grade. I do this constantly and it never makes me feel better. Because I always have so much more to go, see?)
I am supposed to go to a book club meeting/cookie exchange on Saturday, but I am SO FAR BEHIND I may not be able to go. I really need to consider this. Because I really do want to go AND I read the book. But Psych >>>>>>>> everything else coming up in my life. Which! You would think that would have motivated me to get more grading done today, but no. I chose instead to procrastinate by talking to a colleague about how to teach a class I might be teaching in Fall 2018.
I may have a problem.
Anyway, that discussion did help me figure out what novel I’m going to assign next semester: Station Eleven. Unless I do A Wrinkle in Time. Both could work with the theme of my class! (All books pretty much work with the theme of my class. The theme, btw, is cultural literacy.) (Also, now that I have reread my reviews and because the movie is coming out, I am leaning more towards A Wrinkle in Time. I will probably change my mind again.)
Also, I did finish drafting the rubric for my students’ final paper. So it’s not like I didn’t do any work.
I really need to learn to eat the frog. It’s been 13 years. Do you think I’ll ever learn?
I just saw Elizabeth Taylor’s White Diamonds commercial. In 2017. Once I see a Chia Pet commercial, I’ll really know it’s Christmas time. Ch-ch-ch-chia!