June, July & August 2016: Recap + On My Shelves

I usually love the long, lazy days this season brings and look forward to the chance to soak up the sun. But this summer has been nothing like normal for me! I'm hoping fall will bring some peace and rest.

1. Five Year Anniversary - In July, Nick and I celebrated five years of marriage. I'm so incredibly glad that I married him and can't imagine what I'd do without him! It's crazy how much things have changed over the last five years, and I'm so thankful he's been by my side through it all. This year has really thrown me for a loop, but it's made me even more appreciative of Nick's steadiness, support and love. 

2. Finished Dog Training - We adopted Jackson from a rescue organization about four years ago, and we never trained him to do anything besides sit on command. I was never too concerned about it - until we brought the baby home and realized we had to teach Jackson better manners. So, we hired a trainer, and she spent eight weeks teaching us and our pup. I couldn't be more pleased with the results!

3. Family Vacation - We went to the beach with my family in July, and we had so much fun! But let me tell you - vacation is totally different with a baby. Here are just a few ways things changed: 1) It seemed like we had to pack up our entire house and take it with us, 2) we went out to dinner way earlier than usual because of the baby's bedtime and 3) I didn't spend nearly as much time reading as usual!

4. Resigned from Work - This picture doesn't really have anything to do with this item, but I figured a photo of reading in the pool seemed the most fitting... though I'm not sitting around much these days! Once my sweet baby arrived, I realized that I didn't have a strong desire to return to work after my maternity leave. I'm so thankful for the opportunity to be a stay-at-home mom and love spending my days taking care of my boy.

And a little note: Honestly, this has been the best and the worst summer of my life. In a way, I feel like I've ignored so much of what's happened with the things I've written about above. My baby is the reason it's been the best, and I could have filled an entire post with photos and videos of things I've loved about him this summer. Watching him grow and change has been a blessing, a comfort and a joy. But I don't want to share too much about him online, so I focused on some of the other things I've loved lately. And I'll share more soon about why this has been a hard season of my life - it just didn't count as something I've loved. 

Read 18 Books | Favorites:
A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas
Who's That Girl? by Mhairi McFarlane
The Choices We Make by Karma Brown
Results May Vary by Bethany Chase
The Hating Game by Sally Thorne
“To the stars who listen— and the dreams that are answered.” 
A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas

 “This is the arc of a family. Over the years, there are a series of arrivals and departures. 
And in the midst of that, part of the challenge is encouraging the people we love 
to become independent, and to love them as they are.”
Where the Light Gets In by Kimberly Williams-Paisley

“Don't expect someone who doesn't know who they are to care who you are.”
Who's That Girl? by Mhairi McFarlane 

“You won't find someone who treats you as you should be treated 
until you start to believe you are worth the ones you want, 
the ones who aren't asking you to do any work. 
Find the man who appreciates you at your best, 
not one who confirms your worst suspicions about yourself.” 
Who's That Girl? by Mhairi McFarlane 

“Jealousy and hurt will whisper excuses in your ear for almost anything you do, 
but acting with kindness is a choice you will never have a reason to regret.”
Results May Vary by Bethany Chase

“I have a theory. Hating someone feels disturbingly similar to being in love with them.” 
The Hating Game by Sally Thorne

“To focus, I think of how dogs are witnesses. 
How they are present for our most private moments, 
how they are there when we think of ourselves as alone. 
They witness our quarrels, our tears, our struggles, our fears, 
and all of our secret behaviors that we have to hide from our fellow humans. 
They witness without judgement.”
Lily and the Octopus by Steven Rowley

“Forgiveness is not a single act, but a matter of constant practice.”
Drums of Autumn by Diana Gabaldon
Review: Non-Fiction Mini Reviews and Britt-Marie Was Here by Fredrik Backman
1. Her Story: Ladies in Literature 2016 by Jen from Pop! Goes the Reader - Of course, I had to start with this link! I was thrilled when I found out that Jen was continuing this series. I loved the variety and looked forward to reading each new post. If you haven't gotten the chance, take the time to read through them all.

2. Words Have the Power to Change Us by Kelly from Belle of the Literati - I loved how Kelly took a quote from a book she recently read and used it as a jumping off point to talk about what's going on in her life lately. It's such a great feeling when you're able to connect to a book, a character and/or a quote in a personal way.

3. As Far As Your Brain is Concerned, Audiobooks Are Not 'Cheating' by Melissa Dahl on Science of Us - I've always considered audiobooks reading, so it's strange to me that there are people out there who think they don't "count." I find audiobooks challenging - in a good way - because they force me to slow down and focus. 

4. Love is a skill, not just an enthusiasm. by Anne from Modern Mrs. Darcy - Anne shared a lot of great stuff this summer, but this is the post I read more than once. She shared some thought-provoking words about marriage in fiction in this book review. And the title of the post is a quote from the book, which I love!

Favorite Album: HERO by Maren Morris
Y'all, this album was basically the soundtrack to my summer.
I listened to it so much, and it still hasn't gotten old. I can't pick a favorite song!

Me Before You (2016) starring Emilia Clarke and Sam Claflin - I really wanted to see this in theaters, but I never got the chance. So, I pre-ordered it and anxiously waited for it to arrive. While the book is better (of course), I loved the movie! I was really pleased with the casting, adored Lou's crazy outfits, and thoroughly enjoyed seeing some of my favorite scenes brought to life on the screen.

Bought: Results May Vary by Bethany Chase, The Hating Game by Sally Thorne, One True Loves by Taylor Jenkins Reid, Confess by Colleen Hoover, First Comes Love by Emily Giffin and My Lady Jane by Brodi Ashton, Cynthia Hand and Jodi Meadows (not pictured)

Social Media Sold Me On It: Cravings by Chrissy Teigen

Book of the Month Club: Rich and Pretty by Rumaan Alam and Dark Matter by Blake Crouch

From My Mama: Everyone Brave is Forgiven by Chris Cleave, To The Bright Edge of the World by Eowyn Ivey and A Certain Age by Beatriz Williams

From Estelle: A Step Toward Falling by Cammie McGovern

For Review: Love Her Madly by M. Elizabeth Lee, It Ends with Us by Colleen Hoover and Secrets of Nanreath Hall by Alix Rickloff

Kindle Deals (+ Settlement Money) Galore: A God in Ruins by Kate Atkinson, The Fixer by Jennifer Lynn Barnes, The Bucket List to Mend a Broken Heart by Anna Bell, The One That Got Away by Bethany Chase, Making Faces by Angie Harmon, A Night in with Audrey Hepburn by Lucy Holliday, Open Road Summer by Emery Lord, The Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson, Still Life by Louise Penny, Silent in the Grave by Deanna Raybourn. Lily and the Octopus by Steven Rowley, All Joy and No Fun by Jennifer Senior, These is My Words by Nancy Turner and The One-in-a-Million Boy by Monica Wood

Audible Credits:  The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows, To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee, One True Loves by Taylor Jenkins Reid and Lion Heart by A.C. Gaughen

Audible Daily Deals: Persuasion by Jane Austen and A Curious Beginning by Deanna Raybourn

Add Audible Narration” Deals: Lady Thief by A.C. Gaughen, A Court of Thorns and RosesA Court of Mist and Fury, Crown of Midnight, Heir of Fire, and Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas

1 comment

  1. It's such a pleasure to see a post from you pop up in my reader, Hannah! I've missed seeing them <3 It's lovely to hear about all the wonderful things the summer has brought you, and to see what you've been reading and acquiring lately. Looking forward to seeing more from you soon, darling xo


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