Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Currently {July}

Hello hello blog world.  Once again I've been absent, but this time I have a good excuse!  I've been MOVING! And since I'm sure everyone has moved, you know how stressful and time consuming the entire process is.  But I'm officially moved in, everything has been unpacked, and pretty much organized.  So I can say with confidence that I will be back to a much more regular blogging schedule from here on out.

What better way to jump back in then with a "Currently" post.  These are some of my favorite types of posts, both to read and write!  I love going back and seeing where my head was at each month and I love reading them because they give you insight into other bloggers!

So, this month I am....



Reading.... In between books at the moment.
 I can't find one that has captured my attention.  I just finished reading A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas and really enjoyed it.  Like a lot.  And I really want to read the second in the series but I'm hesitant because the third one isn't out yet, so I'd have to wait.  But I don't think I'm gonna be able to wait too much longer.

Feeling....excited, content, nervous, and happy.  Last night was my very first night solo in my new apartment.  My mom was an absolute angel and came down for a week and helped me move.  It was so nice having that time with her and she was a HUGE help.  I seriously don't know how I would have done the move without her.  She went home yesterday so it was interesting being MY apartment for the first time. It was a definitely a mixture of emotions but overall it was amazing!


Drinking....hot tea.  My favorite hot tea, Twinings Lady Earl Grey.

Watching....The Bachelorette: Men Tell All Special.  I know I know. But I was pretty into this season and I wanted to see what all the guys had to say to Chad.  Plus I wanted to see Luke again. Heart eye emojis for days.

Wishing.... That I had the funds to finish up the decorating of my apartment RIGHT NOW.  I still need curtains and throw pillows (for both my bedroom and the living room), a jewelry holder, a floral arrangement, and some fun prints for my gallery wall in the living room.  All these things will be purchased piece meal, I just need to wait for my next two paychecks! :)

Thinking about....EUROPE!  It was at this time last year that I was romping from country to country with Jenny and Katie.  It was literally the best vacation ever.  And I have been dying to go back since the day we got home.  I can't decided where I want to go next though.  It's between a UK tour, a Germany tour or a tour of Eastern Europe.  Here are some of my favorite pictures from our trip!








So just in case you're interested, which I know you all are! : ) I've linked my posts about each city!  Just click the city name to read all about our time in each city! 

Looking forward too....August 12-14!  My friend Whitney is coming to visit for the weekend! She'll be my first house guest and I can't wait for her to get here!  I guess I'm also looking forward to going back to work too.  I guess. 

Wanting....this rug.  I feel like my apartment won't feel 100% complete until this rug is in my living room.

Loving....that everything in my apartment is mine.  This is the first time that every single piece of furniture in the place I live belongs solely to me.  It's a strangely satisfying feeling.  I'll be doing an apartment tour soon.  But there are a few things I want to get before I officially take pictures of the whole space.  But I will be doing an apartment tour on the Snapchat tomorrow morning! :)

Needing....a hair cut!! I said this in my last post I think and it's still true.  I'm still hating my hair and it's getting a bit ridiculous now.  So this may be one expense that I say F-it to and put it on my credit card.

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Alrighty that's all I've got.  Be sure to come back tomorrow as I'll be sharing all about our trip to Washington DC this summer!

Have a great Wednesday! Linking up with Jenn and Jess for "What's Ha-Pinning"!

Friday, July 15, 2016

Oh Hey Friday!

For a teacher on summer break, basically every day is Friday.  But that doesn't mean that we still don't look forward to them. It still means the end of the week and the start of the weekend and who doesn't love Saturdays and Sundays.

So on this fine Friday I have decided to dedicate my Oh Hey Friday to a little confession session.



Here we go!

[one]  I confess I'm so ready to be out of this house and into the new apartment.  Now that I'm by myself in the house it feels too big and too empty.  All my furniture is going to look much better in the little apartment I'm moving into.  And I know it's gonna be much cozier!


[two] I confess the amounts of Law & Order and Grey's Anatomy I'v been watching this week is unhealthy.  If I'm not watching one, I'm watching the other.  And the sad part is I've seen all the episodes already at least twice before.  #summerlife

[three] I confess that my friends have the cutest kids EVER.  I went to visit my college bestie earlier in the week and got to see my 2 year old niece and new baby nephew! :)  They are so stinkin cute.  Charley is so fun and talkative and Shep is so sweet and chunky and cuddly.  I really wish I lived closer to them so I could see them more often.  Actually now that I think about it, all of my friends have the cutest kids ever.


[four] I confess I am in desperate need of hair cut and color.  I HATE my hair right now.  It's too long, my roots are far too grown out and I just want to sit in a stylists chair and have my head pampered for 2 hours.  Sadly I think I'm gonna have to wait till just before school starts to get it done.  But it is literally driving me crazy.

[five] I confess that living alone has been great so far, but I'm already lonely.  I think I've mentioned this before but I've never lived solo.  For like 6 months in like 2013, I felt like I lived alone because I didn't really know any of my roommates that well, thus why I got Sadie.  But y'all it's only been two weeks and I've gotten lonely a few times.

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Have a great Friday friends! Catch ya on Monday! :)

Linking up for Oh Hey Friday! :)

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Your Next Favorite Book: June Reads

June was a fantastic reading month.  Mostly because there was lots of down time and that made reading the most appealing thing for me to do.  I really enjoyed the books that I read in June, one in particular!  And so today I'm sharing said books with you in hopes that you may just find your next favorite book! :)


Here they are!



Goodreads Synopsis: Laia is a slave. Elias is a soldier. Neither is free.
 
Under the Martial Empire, defiance is met with death. Those who do not vow their blood and bodies to the Emperor risk the execution of their loved ones and the destruction of all they hold dear.
 
It is in this brutal world, inspired by ancient Rome, that Laia lives with her grandparents and older brother. The family ekes out an existence in the Empire’s impoverished backstreets. They do not challenge the Empire. They’ve seen what happens to those who do.
 
But when Laia’s brother is arrested for treason, Laia is forced to make a decision. In exchange for help from rebels who promise to rescue her brother, she will risk her life to spy for them from within the Empire’s greatest military academy.
 
There, Laia meets Elias, the school’s finest soldier—and secretly, its most unwilling. Elias wants only to be free of the tyranny he’s being trained to enforce. He and Laia will soon realize that their destinies are intertwined—and that their choices will change the fate of the Empire itself.

My thoughts:  This book was our July pick for my book club at school.  We read a lot of YA novels and I love it.  And this one was no exception.  Its the first of 3 books (shocking for YA I know) but this one was a little different then the typical ones we've all read by now.  What I especially liked was the setting.  It's set in the desert with heavy influences from the Middle East.  Which was refreshing for me since I tend to read a lot of books based on European influences.  I also really enjoyed the character development of each of the characters.  They all grow a lot from beginning to end.  I also liked the it was more on the adult end of the YA genre.  Needless to say, I'm excited for the sequel.  



Goodreads Synopsis:  To five-year-old Jack, Room is the entire world. It is where he was born and grew up; it's where he lives with his Ma as they learn and read and eat and sleep and play. At night, his Ma shuts him safely in the wardrobe, where he is meant to be asleep when Old Nick visits.

Room is home to Jack, but to Ma, it is the prison where Old Nick has held her captive for seven years. Through determination, ingenuity, and fierce motherly love, Ma has created a life for Jack. But she knows it's not enough...not for her or for him. She devises a bold escape plan, one that relies on her young son's bravery and a lot of luck. What she does not realize is just how unprepared she is for the plan to actually work.

Told entirely in the language of the energetic, pragmatic five-year-old Jack, Room is a celebration of resilience and the limitless bond between parent and child, a brilliantly executed novel about what it means to journey from one world to another.

My thoughts:  I have been wanting to read this book since I saw the movie version back in the fall.  And I'm surprised to say I think I enjoyed the movie more than the book.  Now don't get me wrong the book was fantastic.  I loved reading the book from Jack's perspective, it's totally different than anything I've read like this before.  Seeing a terrible event like a kidnapping through the eyes of child is chilling.  And following Jack as he stumbles through a world he thought was make believe is heart wrenching.  But I dunno there was just something about the movie that I really loved.  The movie did follow the book very closely save for a few minor details but I didn't think anything was lost by leaving out those small things in the movie.  Overall loved the book and would 100% recommend it to everyone! 



Goodreads Synopsis:  FRANCE, 1939

In the quiet village of Carriveau, Vianne Mauriac says goodbye to her husband, Antoine, as he heads for the Front. She doesn’t believe that the Nazis will invade France...but invade they do, in droves of marching soldiers, in caravans of trucks and tanks, in planes that fill the skies and drop bombs upon the innocent. When France is overrun, Vianne is forced to take an enemy into her house, and suddenly her every move is watched; her life and her child’s life is at constant risk. Without food or money or hope, as danger escalates around her, she must make one terrible choice after another. 

Vianne’s sister, Isabelle, is a rebellious eighteen-year-old girl, searching for purpose with all the reckless passion of youth. While thousands of Parisians march into the unknown terrors of war, she meets the compelling and mysterious Gäetan, a partisan who believes the French can fight the Nazis from within France, and she falls in love as only the young can...completely. When he betrays her, Isabelle races headlong into danger and joins the Resistance, never looking back or giving a thought to the real--and deadly--consequences.

With courage, grace and powerful insight, bestselling author Kristin Hannah takes her talented pen to the epic panorama of WWII and illuminates an intimate part of history seldom seen: the women’s war. The Nightingale tells the stories of two sisters, separated by years and experience, by ideals, passion and circumstance, each embarking on her own dangerous path toward survival, love, and freedom in German-occupied, war-torn France--a heartbreakingly beautiful novel that celebrates the resilience of the human spirit and the durability of women. It is a novel for everyone, a novel for a lifetime.

My thoughts: THIS BOOK.  I knew I would love it even before I read it.  It's set in WWII so that in and of itself was enough for me.  What I liked about this book was that it touched on a country that I really didn't know too much about during the war.  I tend to forget how badly France was affected by the war because we focus so much on Germany and Poland.  So this gave me some more background into the German occupation of France.  This was one that I could not put down and loved every minute of.  And I cried like a baby like 3 different times.  

There was a line in the book that particularly stuck with me, because I feel like it can relate to all the tensions we've been feeling in the country lately both from outside forces and between our own citizens:  "But love has to be stronger than hate, or there is no future for us."   I can't remember which character said it but I loved the line when I read it and thought it was completely appropriate for today.



Goodreads Synopsis: Mare Barrow’s blood is red—the color of common folk—but her Silver ability, the power to control lightning, has turned her into a weapon that the royal court tries to control. 

The crown calls her an impossibility, a fake, but as she makes her escape from Maven, the prince—the friend—who betrayed her, Mare uncovers something startling: she is not the only one of her kind.

Pursued by Maven, now a vindictive king, Mare sets out to find and recruit other Red-and-Silver fighters to join in the struggle against her oppressors. 

But Mare finds herself on a deadly path, at risk of becoming exactly the kind of monster she is trying to defeat. 

Will she shatter under the weight of the lives that are the cost of rebellion? Or have treachery and betrayal hardened her forever?

The electrifying next installment in the Red Queen series escalates the struggle between the growing rebel army and the blood-segregated world they’ve always known—and pits Mare against the darkness that has grown in her soul.

My thoughts:  This is the sequel to the Red Queen, which I read last year.  And I have to say I was little bored reading the sequel.  It was a lot of the same thoughts and feelings being stated over and over from the same people.  There was very little action but I gotta say the last 50 or so pages were pretty darn good.  And because of that and that alone I will be reading the third book.  I just hope the final book doesn't disappoint me as much as other YA trilogies have in the past.  



Goodreads Synopsis:  A ruthless tycoon

Savage ambition has brought common-born Rhys Winterborne vast wealth and success. In business and beyond, Rhys gets exactly what he wants. And from the moment he meets the shy, aristocratic Lady Helen Ravenel, he is determined to possess her. If he must take her virtue to ensure she marries him, so much the better…

A sheltered beauty

Helen has had little contact with the glittering, cynical world of London society. Yet Rhys’s determined seduction awakens an intense mutual passion. Helen’s gentle upbringing belies a stubborn conviction that only she can tame her unruly husband. As Rhys’s enemies conspire against them, Helen must trust him with her darkest secret. The risks are unthinkable… the reward, a lifetime of incomparable bliss. And it all begins with…

Marrying Mr. Winterborne
 


My thoughts:  Every month I have to read at least one historical romance novel.  They're my weakness and I love them and I don't care.  I've read every single one of Lisa Kleypas novels and love them all.  So anytime she writes a new one I read it.  This one was no exception.  It was lighthearted and fun and made me wish I had been born a high born lady in 1800s London.  Judge me if you will but again I don't care.  I loved every minute of it.  :)

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And that's a wrap for June books.  My favorites were An Ember in the Ashes and The Nightingale.  Of the 5 those are my highest recommendations.  I actually want to buy the hard back version of The Nightingale because I think the cover is so darn pretty and would look good on my bookshelf in my new apartment! :)

Happy reading friends!  Linking up with Steph and Jana for Show Us Your Books! 

Monday, July 11, 2016

The Weekend

Monday's in the summer are the best!  Especially if you're a teacher.  Because I literally have nothing I need to do today other than go to the grocery store.  Sorry I don't mean to brag but it's a pretty good feeling.  :)

Alrighty well the weekend was a good one but a pretty plain one.  It was filled with a little relaxation and a little friend time!  Here were the highlights:



-Received my second VoxBox from Influenster!  It was the Estee Edit Vox Box and y'all I am obsessed with most of the items in the box!  My favorite items in the box were the Beam Team Hydrate + Glow, the Pore Vanishing Stick, and the Barest Lip Color.  

I've literally used the Beam Team Hydrate + Glow everyday since I got it.  It is the perfect replacement for my foundation when I just want a nice glow and a little coverage.  I just put a little concealer underneath and I'm good to go.  I wish the Flash Illuminator had come in a color closer to my skin tone.  Unfortunately I'm not able to use this product since it's too dark.  But my mom loved it!  So that will be going home with her!  But seriously everything in the box is 100% useable and I'm so glad I was chosen to receive this box from Influenster!  I received the items complimentary for review and lemme tell you these items ROCK!
- Found the PERFECT media center for my apartment.  It's from HomeGoods and I am literally obsessed with it.  It is gonna go perfectly with everything else I've picked out and I cannot wait to show it to y'all.  I probably won't post a picture of it on the the blog until the end of the month but follow me on Snapchat (Kalady88) and you'll get a peak at it!

- Had a relaxing Saturday at home.  I cleaned up, did some minor packing, and just lounged on the couch.  I'm trying to decide what book to read next and I just can't decide! There are so many I want to read!

- Downloaded Bumble.  Yes it's another dating app.  But this one is a little different.  It's similar to Tindr in that you swipe left if you are not interested and right if you are. But the catch is that only the women can communicate first.  Which for me is a little intimidating and weird since I never like to  make the first move (it's one of my insecurities I guess).  But I did make the first move with a few guys on the app and so far so good.  So well see! :)

- Gushed over this gorgeous flower tray my mom got me from TJ Maxx.  I cannot wait to get this into the apartment too.  Most of the decor items I've been buying are packed away for the move but this little beauty is stilling on my side table cuz I love it so darn much!

- Celebrated my friend Jenny's birthday with a birthday lunch with some of our friends.  Jenny has officially joined the 28 club! 

- Watched the Real Housewives of New Jersey premier!  This season is gonna be good!  I have to admit I wasn't super interested in Jersey the last few seasons but now that Jacqueline is back I'm def gonna be watching!  Bring on the drama!

-Ended the weekend watching the US Women's Gymnastic Olympic Trials.  Gymnastics has and always will be, my favorite Olympic event.  (Although the diving is up there too these days.)  So it's exciting to watch them compete to see who are next Fab 5 will be!  Simone Biles is a beast and so fun to watch.  It will be fun to watch her kick ass in Rio! GO USA! 

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Well those were the highlights!  See pretty plain but some gun moments thrown in!  The week is looking to be pretty uneventful too but hey, that's what summer is for right!  RIGHT!

Happy Monday! Linking up with Biana for Weekending for the first time in a very long while! :)

Friday, July 8, 2016

5 Things I Learned While In Our Nation's Capitol

Happy Friday friends!

Well I'm back from my big summer trip and now it's back to everyday life in Texas.  I feel like it's always hard to get back into the swing of things after you come back from vacation.  It takes me at least 2 days to feel like things are back to normal.  Thus why I've been absent from the blog since I've been back.

But, since I've just returned from our nation's capitol I thought it would be fun to dedicate this Oh Hey Friday post to just that, our nation's capitol.  Now obviously I have full recaps coming, but first I need to sort through the 600 pictures I took on my fancy camera.  So today, I'm taking a page from one of my blogging besties book (thanks Ashley!) and sharing 5 things I learned while in our nation's capitol!



1. The movies and TV shows all lie.  Lots movie/TV shows (ie. House of Cards, Night at the Museum, and National Treasure) make it seem like everything is super close together. That is completely false.  Yes you can see lots of things but it takes at least 15-20 minutes to get everywhere.  Also the White House is MUCH small than I was anticipating.  Also no pictures are allowed in the National Archives, especially in the room with the Declaration of Independence!   But very cool nonetheless! Obviously.  The history teacher/nerd in me was salivating the entire trip!





2. Uber is the best thing to happen to travel since airplanes.  This was my first time using Uber in a major city and it was amazing.  So much cheaper than a taxi and so easy to use.  Plus Uber is super customer service oriented.  One night we had a driver who clearly had no idea where the hell he was going.  We were charged 46 bucks for a ride that should have been 8 or 9.  Thankfully when I wrote in I was refunded and charged the correct amount.  But if you've never Uber'ed anywhere, get on it.  So easy and cheap,

3.  Booking everything in advance was the best idea ever.  Thank goodness I booked some things in advance.  Especially when it came to touring The Capitol and the White House.  Those were by far the best building we toured.  And neither would ave been possible had I not done a little research and booked our tours back in February!

View of the First Lady's Garden from inside the White House

View from the Red Room inside the White House!


4.  The U.S. Capitol is a lot like the Magic Kingdom. There is a tunnel that connects the offices of our Congressman to the Capitol so they don't have to walk above ground.  I booked our tour of the Capitol through my Congressman's office and so that meant we had a private tour with one of the Congressional interns to the Congressman.  Which was amazing because instead of being with a group of 30-50, we had a private tour.  Yep, you read that right, it was just the four of us and the intern (his name was Jared).  IT was awesome.  Especially because we got to walk through the tunnels that connect the Congressional offices to the Capitol itself.  Apparently there is also a tram system down there too.  But it's not open to the public and you must have an escort.  It 100% reminded me of the tunnels under the Magic Kingdom.  And it was very cool! :)

View of the Capitol from the tunnels. They have these large windows in certain places to allow for some natural light to come through.  


Painting inside the dome in the rotunda of the US Capitol building.  The painting is called Apotheosis of Washington painted in 1865 by an Italian artist. 
On either side of Washington are the angels Victoria (Victory) and Liberty and the other angels surrounding him represent the 13 colonies.  Apparently there are 3 or 4 angels who have their back turned to Washington and these angels are meant to represent the colonies that were still in rebellion as the painting was painted during the last few months of the Civil War. 


5.  Georgetown is a bloggers dream town.  Our hotel was in Arlington which is just a hop, skip and a jump from Georgetown.  We ventured into Georgetown twice, for the same reason. Luke's Lobsters.  SO FRAKIN GOOD!  Georgetown itself was adorable and I wish we had had a little more time to explore.  It was a bloggers dream though: brick walls, lots of shopping, adorable rows of colorful homes, and tons of cute photo ops!  Obviously I took advantage on the Fourth of July!



We really did have the best time romping around Washington D.C.!  Especially as a history teacher and nerd.  There were times when I was just in awe of the things I was seeing.  I really think that every American should visit our nation's capitol at least once in their life.  I think it would help every appreciate the great country we live in just a little bit more!

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Alrighty!  So now that my big vacation is over and done with, and I have no major travel plans for the rest of the summer I can fully dedicate myself to my little space of the internet and to moving!  (Which is happening in 2 weeks! WOO HOO!)

Have a great weekend friends! :)  Catch ya on Monday!

Linking up for Oh Hey Friday.