Sunday, September 29, 2013

Joys of the Week

1. This kitten making wrecking ball adorable.

2. These beautiful quotes from William Faulkner.

3. These Habits of Supremely Happy People.

4. Tonight by Kings of Leon from their new Mechanical Bull album. I remember being disappointed with Come Around Sundown, in fact I don't even think I bought any of the songs off the album, but this whole cd is great. I also really like Supersoaker, Beautiful War, and Work On Me.

5. 23 Reasons to Date a Midwesterner. Yup, you can form a line fellas, no need to fight over this midwesterner.

6. Tina Fey hosted Saturday Night Live last night. It was awesome.
I especially loved this GIRLS promo.

7.  What your taste in music says about you on a date.

8. These gorgeous booties from Nordstrom. I want all the pretty boots/booties this season.

9. This incredible sounding Pumpkin Spice Chai Latte recipe.

10. And lastly this list of 100 Things Every 20-Something Needs to Realize.

Hope everyone has had a great weekend. I just got back from seeing Rush with my mom. I don't know if it's just because I find Formula One interesting or the fact that I enjoy looking at Chris Hemsworth, but I thought the movie was really good. The story got me choked up a few times and kept me on the edge of my seat at points during the races. Both Hemsworth and Bruhl did well in their roles and it was easy to slip into this movie and get lost into their world. So yeah, go out and watch it!

Also the series finale of Breaking Bad is tonight. I'm not prepared, but I can't wait to see how things will end (and who survives)!!


Saturday, September 28, 2013

Words of Advice: Trust

Sometimes it's good to trust yourself and have faith in the future. For now, I'm putting my trust in my story and knowing that things won't always be this way. It's good to have dreams that seem too big, they force you to get creative and to trust in the unknown.


Friday, September 27, 2013

The Book Thief Review

“Like most misery, it started with apparent happiness.”

Words. Sometimes there's too many words and sometimes there's just not enough, or none of them seem to be right. I finished up The Book Thief last night around 4:30 am. I did my best to drag out the ending as much as I could. At one point I just sat in my bed hugging the book to my chest whilst crying and trying to cope with the emotional strain the book had caused. I will be the first to admit that I have a problem when it comes to being overly attached to characters and stories; this was no exception.

The Book Thief, written by Markus Zusak, follows the life of Liesel Meminger, a young girl growing up in Nazi Germany. With the help of her accordion playing foster father, Liesel learns to read using a book she stole during her brother's funeral. Reading and stealing books soon becomes Liesel's distraction from the harsh world around her and ultimately her salvation. The book, narrated by Death, is an observation of friendship, love, and the impact of fear.

“I guess humans like to watch a little destruction. Sand castles, houses of cards, that's where they begin. Their great skills is their capacity to escalate.” 

Even though I knew what was to come (just by the way the book is written), I was not prepared to part with characters I had become so attached to. I felt like I was mourning the loss of fictional characters and non-fictional characters alike and my heart ached. It's still hard for me to imagine the fear and destruction of the Holocaust or how any caring person could have acted with such hatred. The Book Thief, in many different ways, answered the how's and the why's by showcasing human nature from an outside standpoint. Even though the Holocaust was in no way justifiable, the book offers an understanding of how words and fear can make all the difference; Hitler's greatest weapon was his words.

“In years to come, he would be a giver of bread, not a stealer - proof again of the contradictory human being. So much good, so much evil. Just add water.” 

I wrote another post about The Book Thief when I first started reading earlier this month. I originally doubted that the book would take me more than a week to finish, but it ended up taking much longer than expected. I don't know if it was the story itself or just my reading pace that slowed down somewhere after the first 100 pages; either way it wasn't necessarily a bad thing. Besides the story itself, one thing that I loved about the book was Zusak's writing style. The little time outs for facts, backstories, and definitions really emphasized the presence of Death and his intrusion into Liesel's story. Another thing that helped cement Zusak into my favorite authors category was the imagery of his writing. He describes a scene in ways I would never have imagined, and yet, I know exactly what he means by "wardrobe woman," "enormous suitcases under the eyes," "hair the colour of lemons," or "silver eyes starting to rust." Markus Zusak is a master of his craft and an genius of words. If you haven't read The Book Thief, or don't know if you want to, I urge you to give it a try. I will however say this, the book is not exactly cheery, and if you're not a fan of depressing books, this might not be for you. This book is definitely worth the time though, at any age.

“I like that every page in every book can have a gem on it. It's probably what I love most about writing--that words can be used in a way that's like a child playing in a sandpit, rearranging things, swapping them around. They're the best moments in a day of writing -- when an image appears that you didn't know would be there when you started work in the morning.”


Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Ginger Ocean

"Nobody actually looks like what they really are on the inside. You don't. I don't. People are much more complicated than that. It's true of everybody." - Lettie Hempstock (Neil Gaiman from The Ocean At The End of The Lane)

I liked the pairing of this painting and the quote because the woman looks like how I imagined Lettie's mother. I am always drawn to paintings with loose designs that seem to reach out of the canvas with the use of bold colours. You can check out more works from Nathaniel St Amour on his website.


Monday, September 23, 2013

Life Is Art

I found this on Pinterest and couldn't resist sharing. Art is in everything we do. Every human is an artist.


Sunday, September 22, 2013

2013 Prime Time Emmys

Kerry Washington looked absolutely amazing! That dress was gorgeous.

Tina and Amy! Tina and Amy! Tina and Amy! My love never dies. They're amazing and both of them together can do no wrong. 

My other babies. Bryan Cranston and Aaron Paul being cute as always. I decided Breaking Bad could wait until 11:30.

Jim Parsons won!!

And Anna Gunn!

And then Aaron Paul didn't win and I was a little disappointed. (And basically all the people who won after that too)

Apparently people don't know who Jeff Daniels is though...? I actually haven't watched The Newsroom at all, but how do you forget Dumb and Dumber?

Let's not forget NPH's mid show musical number!!! Eeekkkkkkkk yes!

I was even more excited to see the performance for Outstanding Choreography. No matter how disappointed I was with Hough's win (you guys should know by now how much I love SYTYCD), the performance was amazing.

BREAKING BAD WON!!!!!!!!!!!!! Such a great way to end the night. Right before I watch tonights episode :)

So basically I love award shows. Happy!

Did you guys like the Emmys? What were your thoughts? Were you happy with the results?


Friday, September 20, 2013

Harvest Chai and Stuff

I can't believe it's already September 20th. The first day of fall is only two days away and I feel like I've barely posted anything this month. I've let my blogging duties slip lately, it's not for lack of time but lack of inspiration. I don't really want to write for the pure sake of getting another blog post out (kind of what I feel like I'm doing right now).

I haven't been up to a whole lot lately. Mostly running around town, trying to force myself to get out of the house. That's the main problem when you don't have classes or a job, there's really no great reason to get dressed and venture out into public. Today I went downtown to a coffee shop to read again. There's a few different coffee places downtown and I didn't know where I wanted to go until I remembered what time of year it was. Espresso Bay has a seasonal drink called a Harvest Chai, which is a mixture of apple cider and chai tea. Basically my friends and I think this is the greatest drink of all time and have no idea how this is the only coffee shop that we know of that serves a drink like this.

Last year we were sorely disappointed by our favorite fall beverage because someone hadn't trained the baristas correctly and the drinks were not up to snuff. Thankfully this barista knew what was up and made me an oh-so-deliciously dreamy Harvest Chai. It's kind of pathetic that a drink can make me this happy.

In other news, I'm still reading The Book Thief because I started watching Supernatural and that has taken up most of my time lately. I'm already on season four. I've put off watching Supernatural for quite some time now (the tenth season will be starting soon). I really didn't have any desire to watch it when the show first came out, but my years on tumblr started to convince me it may actually be worth my time. Besides all those weird tumblr posts were making me really curious. Another part of me resisted watching the show for the fact that I didn't want another show to obsess over. Finally at the end of August one of my best friends told me she had started watching the show and highly recommended that I do the same. Now I'm hooked and there's no looking back. I didn't realize just how funny the show actually was.

Those Winchester men aren't too bad to look at either.


Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Can we talk about how much I love apples?

It's funny how much I disliked apples as a kid. Looking back on my childhood, I disliked a lot of foods that I love now. I think it's a fairly common occurrence, but it seems like a weird concept to me. Shouldn't it be the other way around? Wouldn't it make more sense if we started off liking/eating a larger variety of foods and then over the years cut out those items we don't care for?

(source) because I'm too lazy to take my own pictures at the moment.

Anyway I'm not really here to discuss the oddities of human nature, but to tell you just how much I love apples! I was pretty giddy on Saturday when my parents brought home a bag of red, juicy apples from the farmer's market. Apple season is upon us and I could not be more happy to see one of my favorite locally grown fruit. I'm still not the biggest fan of Granny Smiths but any of the red varieties usually appeal to me. Apples make for the best snacks, eat them plain or cut up with peanut butter, they fill you right up.

Unlike most of my other favorite foods, apples also happen to be good for you (Jeah boi!!!) Can't go wrong folks. I even came across this post on the Free People blog the other day about the some of the benefits of eating apples. Boost your immune system... maybe that will help my ear heal faster (one can only hope). Also consider me on board with anything that improves memory and could possibly ward off Alzheimer's.

I think my goals for autumn are to go apple picking and to bake an apple pie (maybe some homemade applesauce?). I'm also super excited about hot apple cider and harvest chai season. There are definitely benefits to being back home in Traverse City. Appreciate the resources you have around you and don't forget to eat some apples! After all, an apple a day keeps the doctor away :)


Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Hockey and Weddings

This is a little late, but it's happening anyway. This past weekend I was able to go watch The Red Wings practice, not something that happens everyday. The Detroit Red Wings have their training camp up in Traverse City every year and we ended up getting tickets for Saturday. My dad, brother, brother's girlfriend, and I all went. We made sure to show up early in order to watch the team practice before the scrimmage. During the first practice we arrived a little too late for great seats (but basically anywhere in there is good since it's not very big).

Before the second practice we slipped in 20 minutes early (and were freezing) in order to snag front row center seats. It was totally worth it! I'm kind of surprised more people weren't in there with us ahead of time.

Me, Katy, and Taylor waiting for practice to start

Mike Babcock giving the guys notes.

Zetterberg kept coming over and waiting by the glass, but he was at this odd angle about four feet to my left so it was hard getting photos of him while he wasn't in action.

Danny DeKeyser played for WMU's hockey team, finishing up his last season there before joining The Red Wings last year. Go Broncos!

Face Off in front of our seats during the scrimmage. Our tickets for the scrimmage were over in the corner, which also ended up being a good place to watch.

After the scrimmage let out my dad and I decided to leave in order to
1. eat (because we were starving at this point)
2. get ready

Saturday afternoon one of my neighbors got married. It ended up being absolutely lovely weather for the outdoor ceremony. I'm not a big wedding person but if you want to get on my good side go small and short (which is exactly how it was). I also really liked Ali's choice of colors, orange and purple. The reception was held in the same location and started directly after the ceremony. I got in my awkward hugs and congratulations before heading towards the food. They also had a photobooth, which was a really fun idea.

Nothing like being a third wheel with your parents.... hahaha. Gotta love them.

As you can see I am totally incapable of making a straight face.

Overall it was a fantastic day. So happy I got to witness a little hockey action to get me psyched for the season and a big congratulations to Ali and Sawyer!


Sunday, September 15, 2013

Breaking Bad Feelings: Ozymandias

So Aaron Paul live tweeted the episode of Breaking Bad tonight. It was kind of awesome and yet all so horrible at the same time. Like what even happened during this episode. Too many feels man, too many.


Like for reals when they shot Hank. My heart was pounding so hard. So many of the story lines were wrapped up though, which was kind of nice (although...not really). And then this happened....

How anyone could still like Walt after this episode, I just have no idea. He definitely went off the deep end when he had the knife at Skylar's throat and then ran off with the baby. Oh and let's not forget how truly awful that phone call was between him and Skylar. I was cringing that whole time. Only two episodes left. I think we're all going to need therapy afterwards.


Thursday, September 12, 2013


The weather has finally cooled off today so I ventured out for my first pumpkin spice latte of the season. Like so many others, fall is my favorite time of the year, and I'm certainly not ashamed to say I get excited for all things pumpkin. Here's a little list of all the other things that I'm looking forward to this fall.

Picture from last year in TC
  • College football (although it's not the same now that I'm done with school)
  • Sweater weather
  • Fresh apples from the farmer's market
  • The crisp air (and not dripping in sweat if I decide to walk anywhere)
  • Colorful leaves
  • Boots (can we talk about how much I want this entire outfit?)
  • New seasons of my favorite TV shows
  • Scarves, scarves, and more scarves
  • A decline in my allergies (we can only hope)
  • Doughnuts and apple cider
  • Fall flavored Woodchuck 
  • Darker nail polish colors
  • Beanie season begins
  • Hot coffee and tea
  • New beginnings

It's funny how fall has really always marked the beginning of a new year for me, more than anything else. Since so much of our younger years revolve around school, and the "school year," fall always defined a new start. This year definitely seems different without the start of classes, but I'm determined to still consider this a new start (and a new change). I've been working hard every day trying to keep a positive attitude and outlook. Fall just means pushing forward, trying harder, starting fresh.


Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Musical Gems

This came out today and was totally worth the watch. Matthew Healy of The 1975 played some songs for NPR's Tiny Desk Concerts. I'm loving these stripped down and acoustic versions. 

Here are a few more musical gems for you all today.

Chance Waters does a cover of Little Lion Man by Mumford and Sons. Not what I was expecting but it such a good way.

The lovely voice of Angus Stone singing a cover of Hold On by Alabama Shakes. All the lovely things together as one.

Crazy by Au Revior Simone.

Closer Than This from St. Lucia.

Hope you enjoy!


Sunday, September 8, 2013

Breaking Bad Thoughts

After tonight there is only three episodes left of Breaking Bad. This season has definitely been the best yet. I really hope Aaron Paul wins another Emmy this year because his performance has been amazing (as well as other people's). I still can't believe the show is ending. If you had asked me last year whether or not I thought the show should be continued I would have said no (it had gotten kind of boring and overly violent), but they really stepped up this season. The writers really know how to go out with a bang.

I found these pictures of Bryan Cranston and Aaron Paul from Entertainment Weekly on tumblr and thought I'd share.

Looking good guys

Spoilers: I can't believe Walter actually surrendered (and was going to have Jesse killed)... AND THEN EVERYTHING WENT TO SHIT!! Which was obviously going to happen, I feel like you can't just call off a hit when you're working with a group like that. Todd and his uncles scare me. All I can say is that I hope no one dies out of the good people. Walt's not good, but we already know he survives so that's out of the question. Also, how is everything going to be wrapped up in the next three episodes?? I think that's my biggest question.

I'm not making any predictions for the finale. I know a lot of people like to try and work out the puzzle ahead of time, but I'm all about staying in the dark until the truth is laid out in front of me (at least when it comes to TV shows/books). 

What were your thoughts on tonights episodes? Or Breaking Bad in general?


Thursday, September 5, 2013

Words of Advice

Just a friendly reminded that your life is what you make of it.

My life may not be orderly but it most certainly is my own.


Wednesday, September 4, 2013

"It's The Kind Of Book That Can Be Life Changing"

“He was the crazy one who had painted himself black and defeated the world.

She was the book thief without the words.

Trust me, though, the words were on their way, and when they arrived, Liesel would hold them in her hands like the clouds, and she would wring them out like rain." - Markus Zusak

I started The Book Thief earlier. I'm only 90 pages into it and I already think this is my new favorite book of all time. Markus Zusak's writing is so incredible (ex: above quote) and I don't think I'd ever be able to say enough good things about it, even at this point.

I want to just keep reading, and reading, nonstop until I'm done, but I also hate finishing books. Everyday dilemmas. Now I know why everyone loves this book. It's definitely worth picking up. I was also really glad that I didn't watch the trailer before starting to read the book. I love delving into unknowns when it comes to books. I didn't want the trailer to ruin anything for me. Hopefully I can make it all the way through before every watching it.

What are you currently reading? Have you read The Book Thief?


Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Can We Take A Moment... talk about how amazing Amy Yakima has been this season and how much I absolutely loved her and Robert's dance tonight. This girl can do no wrong, she just keeps getting better and better. Between tonights dance and her routine with Travis Wall last week, I can't decide which dance I love better, or who she had more chemistry with. Amy just seems to fit with everyone.

I wasn't thrilled to hear they're picking two winners this year, but I really hope Amy and Aaron win. I love Jasmine and Fik-Shun too, but if there has to only be two winners Amy and Aaron are definitely my top choices.


August Favorites

Here are a few of my favorite things during the month of August.

- Person: Sarah Kay
I know Sarah Kay has been well known in the poetry world for a while now, but I just got into her work at the end of July. That meant I spent most of August watching a large majority of Sarah's spoken word poetry performances on Youtube. If you've never heard of Sarah Kay, or given spoken word poetry a chance, I'd recommend you start here.

And lastly her awesome TED talk.

- Book: Angels & Demons

After years of having this book on my shelf I finally got around to reading it. My mom and brother have read all of the Robert Langdon books since they started coming out. When they became popular, I was in high school and I rarely ever had time to read books for leisure. Despite already having seen both of the movies with my family, I still wanted to read the books at some point.

I'm so happy I finally got around to reading Angels and Demons this past month. Luckily it's been years since I've seen the movie and I forgot most of the plot. I know the book has been quite controversial, but I really enjoyed the story. The book was a perfect mixture of science, history, art, and the ever lingering questions of religion and faith.

- TV: Being Human (UK version)
I started watching Being Human this month. I knew the UK version was the original and had no desire to watch the US one (seeing as we typically ruin all the good UK shows). I can't say I've been completely obsessed with this show like I've been with other ones, but I do love it.

For those of you who've never heard of Being Human, the show is about a vampire, a werewolf, and a ghost that try living together in a London flat. There's plenty of drama and brooding amongst the group. Plus Aiden Turner in it, which is what originally drew me to the show. I only just finished season two, but the show definitely keeps you on the edge of your seat. I also just really love how their relationships have evolved one another. I can't wait to see where things go next.

Fresh faced beauties.

- Beauty: L'Oreal Elnett Satin Hairspray

I've been using more products in my hair since cutting it off at the beginning of the month. One of the products I was in desperate need of was a good hairspray. After googling for a bit for the best reviews, I decided to try the Elnett Satin kind from L'Oreal. This stuff doesn't leave your hair feeling overly sticky or crusty. My hair stays in place but doesn't look like it's completely immobile. The other nice thing about this hairspray is that it comes out just by combing or running your fingers through your hair. The only thing I'm not too keen on is the smell of this hairspray; I've also been choosing to ignore the list of ingredients to avoid seeing how unhealthy this product might be for me. Oh well, I'm still really loving this hairspray for now and the negatives don't cancel out any of the things I like about the product.

- Music:

Clairvoyant by The Story So Far

Last month I seemed to have a renewed sense of love for The Story So Far. I got into the band last year during a pop punk phase and sort of forgot about them since. Fortunately I rediscovered the band via their new cd that came out in March. I'm a little late to the party, but it's oh sooo good.

Shiver Shiver by Walk the Moon

I finally started getting into some of the songs off of their self titled cd from last summer. This song has definitely been my go to for a put me in a good mood/dance around the kitchen beat.

Walk the Moon has been a favorite of mine for a while now. I discovered them back in 2010 before they had much of a following. Now you can't even buy their I Want! I Want! cd off of iTunes anymore. Anna Sun was their first song I heard and immediately fell in love with. Last year when the band became largely popular due to the song (which they definitely deserved) I could barely go anywhere without it blaring in my ears. Anna Sun will never be the same for me, it was like the song was corrupted. I don't like being one of those people who feels the need to declare her love of a band "before they became popular," but I definitely feel the need to do so on most occasions. I am certainly not the biggest fan or the first person to ever discover any band, but I try hard to constantly find new music. It seems the radio mentality of playing the same 20 songs over and over again has a way of ruining any song.

I'm the King by Six Def

I found this song while watching Suits this summer. TV shows are a great place to find new music.

Hacienda Motel by Pickwick

An oldie but goody! I wrote a post about Pickwick earlier this year and got back into them during August. This is definitely my favorite song from them.

Empty Space by The Story So Far

Another amazing song from The Story So Far. I really could not get enough of them this past month.

What were your favorite things this month?