Monday, January 25, 2021

Top 5 2020 Books I Read

I haven't done a book roundup post in a good while, so I thought I would share my top 5 books I read last year. I read 178 books last year, according to my GoodReads reading challenge where you can see everything else I read. I was already an avid reader, but I guess lockdown really got me into a stride. Even this year I'm already at 18 books, so we'll see if I can top last year's count or not! If you have any recommendations, toss them my way.

These five books are in very different categories, which pretty much sums up my reading style. I read anything that sounds interesting or will captivate my attention. I probably do read more romance than anything else, because they are quick reads and easy escapes. They also serve as great palate cleansers after reading something heavy. I read a lot of books that were awful, wonderful, and everything in between. These fall in the wonderful category and I don't think you can go wrong with them. Completely and utterly 4 or 5 ⭐ reads, by my standards!

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Someone We Know by Shari Lapena
A classic whodunit. I love these. I have a few on my list that I'm wanting to get through this year! I enjoy Shari's writing and I don't always guess correctly, which I like. This one kept me guessing and...whoa! Be prepared for psychological twists throughout. If you're a fan of a good ol' murder mystery, add this to your list.

Me and White Supremacy by Layla F. Saad

During this past year, I've tried to educate myself further like I'm sure many of you have. You will be uncomfortable. You will have to dig deep. And you should go into reading this and other books like it being okay with that. This one is done in a 28 day journaling type of writing, allowing you to reflect on what you read.

White Fragility: Why It's So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism by Robin DiAngelo

You will learn from this book. Like above, be prepared to dig deep. Be open to change. Be open to learning. I have other books on my list to get to and I think it's important to keep educating ourselves on the subjects of race, sexuality, humanity, and just everything to have better empathy, love, respect, and understanding. Give me an open mind over a closed mind any day.

The Five: The Untold Lives of the Women Killed by Jack the Ripper by Hallie Rubenhold
We hear so much about Jack the Ripper and what he did and who he could be. What about the victims of the crimes? This book delves into who these women were, their backstories, and what lead them to their untimely ends. Their names were Polly, Annie, Catherine, Mary-Jane, and Elizabeth. There isn't much known about them, but Hallie still finds a way to humanize them and talk about what that time was like.

Look the Part by Jewel E. Ann

Easily my favorite romance novel that I read last year! This is written incredibly well and has a beautiful story line without being over-the-top and cliche. It starts with a love-hate relationship and blossoms, heavy with emotional and lighter moments. I can't say enough good things. This has more to it than just being a romance novel.

I often add a book or two to my Five Friday Faves posts, as well. If I read a good book, I love talking about it. Let me know if you're on GoodReads (my profile is linked above). Do you have a reading goal set for this year? Good luck on reaching it! It's not how many you read, it's that you are reading. 😊

Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Dr. Teal's Melatonin Formula Epsom Salts and Foaming Bath

It's no secret by now that I love Dr. Teal's products. I've had numerous bags of their epsom salts and tried several of the formulas. This melatonin one is their newest offering! I have the melatonin formula in both the epsom salts and foaming bath. I was sent these for an honest review and have been testing this specific formula for weeks now. For the record and minor spoiler alert, I really don't think you can go wrong with any of the Dr. Teal's offerings!

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Friday, January 15, 2021

2020 Beauty Favorites

I try to do this little roundup every year, where I feature products that truly had the spotlight during the past year. This isn't where I share only new to me products, though some do fall into that category. Some are actually repeats over the years because I just haven't found anything that takes their crown away. This year is slightly less than past years, since I've spent the majority of it at home and not needing to bother with makeup on most days! As a matter of fact, most of my favorites this year is skincare.

To see what I liked last year,  you can read that post here. My routine certainly changed this year. How about yours? Did you find that you were putting more emphasis on skincare? With wearing masks, I really found I had no choice but to do so anyway. They definitely changed my skin a bit. There are a few products that I've currently been using in the past two months, but I try to only showcase products that had several months use. I do have those products coming up with reviews, though! I'd love to hear what some of your favorites were during 2020. Let me know in the comments!

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Monday, January 11, 2021

InstaMonth for December 2020

Wow, I last posted early last Wednesday. I thought one of the bigger events of my day would be when we took our Christmas decorations down. Boy, was I wrong in so many ways. Not long after that post was published, I watched as domestic terrorists stormed my country's (I'm an American in Canada) Capitol Building and continued the attack on democracy. I cannot begin to put into words the sadness and anger that I felt as I watched it all unfold. That I still feel. It just piles on to what I have been feeling over the past year, having reached my breaking point long ago. I hope that everyone involved is found guilty and faces punishment and is held accountable for their words and actions. I just want to make it clear where I stand.

Now, to the post planned for today. It's fluff compared to what's happening in the world, but we need a little fluff and escape! Here are a few highlights from my Instagram this past month. I love posting in December with all of the festivities of the holiday season afoot! I'm trying to amp up my likes and comments this year. It's near impossible to grow anymore, I find. If you'd like to follow each other, let's do it! I love following all of you!

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What was in my purse. Isn't this Mickey backpack the cutest?!

Wednesday, January 6, 2021

December 2020 Favorites

Just as I'm trying to get used to typing out "2021", I'm having to type "2020" for just a few more posts. I am happy to get into 2021's posts and focus fully on the new year soon! Here's hoping 2021 is a better year. As my first official post of the new year, I hope you all had a wonderful holiday season. It has been hard getting back into the normal routine after being in vacation mode, but I certainly came back refreshed and rejuvenated. My first big task blog-related is catching up on emails and organizing my inbox. Can't say I'm looking forward to it, but I do better when things are streamlined. The longer it is put off, the more that has to be might as well suck it up and get to it! 😅

To my favorites from December! I'd love to know what some of your favorites were. As happy as I am to see 2020 over, I will miss December and all of the holiday vibes. My tree is on as I type, but everything will be coming down and into storage this evening. So sad to see it all go away for months again! It goes by too quickly, doesn't it?!

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