Happy 8 Year Anniversary!

Holy crap.

I just got a notification from WordPress congratulating me on 8 years of writing on this blog.

8 years I’ve spent writing about books I’ve loved or hated, personal stories of triumph or failure, love and loss, book hunting, Keep Moving Forwards, True Story Tuesdays, or To Say a Little Words.

8 years of my life.

An inconsistent 8 years of writing on here, but still! That’s bananas.

So thank you all who have stuck with me, who have appreciated the posts, who have reached out to tell me how hilarious I am. I have a small fanbase, but I still appreciate it and am so grateful.

Here’s to you all! For putting up with my nonsense, my wisdom, my lies about when I’ll be posting, my long stretches of going MIA, and the grappling I do with books on a daily basis.

Here’s to books! Without them I would’ve beheaded someone a long time ago.

Constant vigilance!

Summers Read Part 2

I’m backed up. Not…not in the bowel department. I don’t know why I feel like I needed to clarify that when you’ll see in a minute that I mean book reviews.

Either way. Here we are.

In The Woods–Tana French

This book was total trickery. 

In that I didn’t realize it was a series. I only read the first one, but now I need to read the rest to find out what the shit happened. 

This is about how kids were in the playing in the back woods in a Dublin suburb in 1984, and they only found one kid.

A parents worse nightmare. Two kids went missing and one was found covered in blood gripping a tree trunk and unable to remember what happened. 

20 years later the boy is a detective and he’s on the case of a 12 year old girl who was murdered in the same woods his friends went missing. 

He uncovers piece by piece what happened not just to the girl, but to his friends. 

Sort of. I remember being like ‘Wait WHAT.’ When it ended because it wasn’t finished and then I looked it up online and found out that it was part of a series. 

And then not committing to find the others and never solving the mystery. 

Not like me. 

But oh well. Someday i’ll finish that series because after rereading its synopsis I’m intrigued again! 

…Actually upon reflection that totally is like me. I stopped reading Game of Thrones three books in, I stopped reading Outlander after two books, I even stopped reading those Sweep books and had to return to them to finish them. 

My best friend is laughing at my previous statement of “Not like me.” haha. (She gets all the texts when I pick the series back up of “Hey…who’s dead and what happened???” 

Her memory is better then mine. 

Anywho: This book was interesting, maybe if I stumble upon the second book somewhere I’ll get back to it and solve that dang mystery!

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Weird Sisters–Eleanor Brown

This book was very enjoyable. Reminded me of me and my sisters. Only in that we are weird and so different from each other, and yet so similar. Really, if one of us didn’t have a sense of humour our family dynamics would be VERY different. 

Instead of making each other laugh, someone would’ve been stabbed a long time ago. 

Anyway, this book is about three sisters who find themselves back at home to help with their ailing mother. Their dad named them after three of Shakespeares leading ladies and only really speaks to them in verse. 

Which I would find infuriating, but also fun. I love Shakespeare. But I would’ve slapped my dad. 

Good book, well written, interesting story. Definitely read it. 

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I Know I Am, But What Are You?–Samantha Bee

Samantha Bee is (was, maybe?) the Most Senior Correspondent on the The Daily Show (In the Jon Stewart era) and is pretty damn funny.

This was a good summer book. Clever, well spoken, and had fun stories in there but not overwhelmingly political or heavy. But she also didn’t dumb anything down. It was lovely. 

I liked reading about her life and where she ended up. Despite the fact that people have always flashed her at weird intervals in her life. 

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Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm–Kate Douglas Wiggin

Grain of salt here: This is a children’s book. And I usually don’t like childrens books that are classics just because I find them quite boring and like nothing happens. (Generational gap, I suppose.)

This was no exception. It’s about a little girl who is lovely, but a bit of a show off. She is sent to a farm to live with her aunts and is constantly in trouble for being…well an extrovert.

Hurts my feminist heart to see a little girls life being snuffed out and stuck in a box. No worries though, everyone ends up dead and she gets an inheritance to make life better.

I just couldn’t get on board with this book. I was reading it to my little cousin as part of our nap time ritual (at the time) and it put us both to sleep.

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Work it Out: The Word “Diet’.

This year is the year I say ‘Goodbye’ to the word ‘Diet’. That word holds a lot more power than we think it does. What is a diet? A diet is a list of “Should’ and ‘Shouldn’t’. A diet is something to restrict yourself to. A diet is something you follow, PMS, and then everything is on fire and you don’t know how you ended up eating three bags of chips in a week, a jar of pickles, and a case of chocolate.

You black out and wake up in a stupor of “Oh shit. What did I do?”

And then I rip myself a new one, calling myself a failure, making myself feel like shit because I failed myself once again. It’s brutal. It’s a cycle I’m working on breaking.

At least that’s me. I tend to go on diets and think to myself “Well, I’ll just have ONE little bite” of the thing that diet says not to eat and then I’m down a rabbit hole looking like Gollum and swiping at anyone who tries to come near me.

So. This year I made a choice for my mental health (as well as my physical health) and decided I wasn’t going to diet anymore. Crash diets, juicing, cleanses, detoxes, any building that has the word “Herbal” in it is no longer for me. I don’t want to take “Herbals” anymore to help me lose weight faster. I don’t want to cut things from my life in order to lose weight.

I honestly, just want to stop thinking about losing weight in general.

I’ve added a lot of Body Inspirational women to my Instagram, I’ve gotten really into My Peak Challenge, I’ve started doing the grocery shopping in my house because then I’m in control of the goodies that come in. I’ve started cooking again.

I’ve taken a stand in a way. I’m in no way obese or a “health risk”. At least not according to how I feel in my own body recently. (Which thanks to doing MPC I feel a hell of a lot stronger. Yes. That was me patting myself on the back for getting my ass up.) I’m 5 foot 6, weigh 200 pounds (I’ve recently lost five. I expect more to get out of here because I’m currently menstruating and that usually means I’ve gained 5 pounds of pure water weight.) and have an addiction to coffee.

That coffee thing is really hard to beat when you work with kids, let me tell you. The 3 year old talks a mile a minute and it’s all I can do to keep up with his train of thought!

Anyway.

My point is: I’ve stopped dieting. And started planning. Which is it so fucking different from dieting let me tell you. I’m not starving, I’m not angry, I’m not looking for loopholes, sneaking fast food, or devouring carbs like a gremlin in the dark of the night.

‘Meal Plan’ sounds so much more positive than “Diet’. I mean, diet has the word ‘die’ in it. Come on.

But MEAL PLAN, dude, that’s a plan to eat meals. That sounds awesome! PLANNING TO EAT IS SO GREAT.

And some people will think that there’s barely a difference, because I’m still restricting certain foods. But I’m also trying to do intuitive eating, which is thinking about what I’m chomping on and how it makes me feel and my body feel. And let me tell you, pops are dead to me, certain candy is dead to me, I hate to say it, but potatoes are kind of dead to me (I’ll never give up on poutines though. NEVER.) and certain breads are goners too.

So that’s where I’m at this month with my working out and planning. It’s actually been really nice to be able to feel powerful again.

Do what you got to do for you, and you’ll only get stronger!

Keep moving forward!

sTori Telling–Tori Spelling

Okay look…I can’t explain why I picked this one up. I had zero interest in Tori Spelling, her career, or anything that’s ever happened to her. I bought this at a thrift store because I like to read incredibly random biographies now. And this took the cake on random because I had never really given Tori Spelling a second thought.

BUT…I’m glad I read this.

I genuinely enjoyed this autobiography!

She was funny, self deprecating, and (felt like) completely honest about her love life, career, and relationship with her parents. She totally realized that she was a product of nepotism in her career and tried to steer away from it and work on her own without the help of her dad. (An exception would be 90210, but she auditioned and worked hard to get that role.)

I’m looking forward to reading more of her work because she’s actually incredibly funny.

This was a great summer read, it was quick, light, and made me feel like she was talking directly to me over a glass of mojitos.

And I don’t even drink mojitos.

–Constant vigilance.

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Roald Dahl

The Giraffe, The Pelly, and Me—Roald Dahl

This book was short and sweet and so will this review be:

This was about a little boy who was introduced to his new neighbours: a giraffe, a pelican, and a monkey. They had just moved in and were renovating a house to be their business. They were opening a window cleaning business and the boy shows them a house that really needs it since there are several hundred windows and they all live happily ever after cleaning these windows.

It was short, which was good since there was zero plot for this kids book, and I liked it. It was cute and Daryl liked the bits about the animals.

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James and the Giant Peach—Roald Dahl

Again, being a kid of the 90s I watched the movie version of this first and I believe I thought it was super creepy.

The book however was quite sweet. The story is, of course, that James’ parents die, he moves in with his terrible aunts, they mistreat him, magic makes a peach grow alongside a bunch of bugs in the area, and adventure begins as the aunts are bowled over by the oversized peach.

I really liked this one, it had funny jokes, wordplay, and I learned some interesting information on bugs.

Definitely a good book for any age child.

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The Witches—Roald Dahl

Hey there, here’s another for the list of things not to read to children.

Firstly, I don’t know why the hell I thought Roald Dahl WASN’T going to be a big creep. The descriptions alone should’ve made me turn away from reading these to a two year old.

I mean, the book is called “The Witches”. I should’ve known.

But hey. Live and learn, right?

Short, creepy, and full of witches, mice, and mayhem, this book is about a kid who discovers real witches and learns from his grandmother how to fight them off.

The problem is: Witches look like any normal person.

In the beginning of the book Dahl goes on to give you a list of people who are likely witches, they are always women and could be anyone from your teacher to your mother to the person reading the book right now. And then goes on to describe how you can tell who is a witch and who isn’t.

The only saving grace I had working with this book was that Daryl would fall asleep pretty easily during it. And that I would use a witch hand to tickle him so that it wasn’t so terrifying.

Good for older kids I suppose.

If you hate them and want to give them nightmares.

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