January 2018: Recap + On My Shelves

In January, I was busy doing one of my favorite activities: getting organized. 2018 got off to a great start for me, and I already know that February is going to be even more exciting! I can't wait to see what this year holds. 

1. New Computer - This technically happened in December, but I didn't start using it until January so I think it counts! I got my previous Macbook in 2010, and it served me well through the years. But I was so excited to get a new one -- it's so fast! I'm always shocked by how quickly my applications open... and the fact that they aren't constantly freezing. 

2. Hello, 2018! - This year got off to the perfect start! First, a new year means a new planner. My main one is the same (an 18-month one), but I got to add a new blogging section. Then, UGA won the Rose Bowl (don't talk about the National Championship). The next day, I booked a trip to England and Scotland with Kelly. HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ME.

3. Savoring Sweet Moments - January was a sweet month for my little family! We spent a lot of time at home with the cold (and sometimes rainy) weather, but we loved every minute of it. From an unexpected snowfall to sweet afternoons reading by the fire, I'm savoring these days. I know that I'll blink, and it will feel like they've passed.

4. Homemade Happy Planner Printables - As I've become more and more obsessed with my Happy Planner and all the stickers, I kept wishing for a way to incorporate some of the things I'd loved about my bullet journal (like TBR trackers). I couldn't find what I wanted online, so I figured out how to make my own printables. I'll blog about this soon!

Read 6 Books | Favorites:
The Tea Rose by Jennifer Donnelly
The Winter Rose by Jennifer Donnelly
The Wild Rose by Jennifer Donnelly
“Sometimes it takes a few years before you understand what you're worth.
And who's worth your time.”
Now That You Mention It by Kristan Higgins

 “As a quick aside, let me observe that in moments of high emotion [...]
if the next thing you're going to say makes you feel better, then it's probably the wrong thing to say.”
Rules of Civility by Amor Towles

 “Why is it that men's courage is called bravery
but women's courage is called recklessness -- or, even worse, foolishness?”
Impossible Saints by Clarissa Harwood

 “The day you stop dreaming you might as well take yourself down to the undertaker’s,
for you’re as good as dead.”
The Tea Rose by Jennifer Donnelly

“He who cannot endure the bad will not live to see the good.”
The Winter Rose by Jennifer Donnelly

“Bravery is feeling fear but doing the thing anyway.”
The Wild Rose by Jennifer Donnelly
One of my goals for 2018 is to blog more consistently, and I was pleased that I started the year strong by publishing 9 posts. In case you missed it, I've got to start with my December 2017 recap. But my first post was actually one of my favorite Top Ten Tuesday topics: Favorite New-to-Me Authors I Read in 2017. Then, I reviewed The City Baker's Guide to Country Living by Louise Miller (my final review for the 2017 Picky Pledge Reading Challenge). Once we all caught up on our challenge reviews, reflected on the year and shared our future plans in The Picky Pledge 2018

I had ideas for more creative posts, but I really wanted to get caught up on my 2017 reviews. And that meant focusing on Quick Lit, my mini review roundups. Since I read so many books those months, I split both posts to make them shorter. November 2017 (Part 1) has reviews for three series I binged, and November 2017 (Part 2) features eight standalones. Then, I reviewed six standalones in December 2017 (Part 1) and two series in December 2017 (Part 2).

And finally, even though it was basically a month overdue, I couldn't resist sharing one of my favorite 2017 recaps: The 2017 End of the Year Book Survey. I look forward to it every year, but I always procrastinate writing it. It's so hard to choose my answers! Now, let's see if I can keep this up in February...
1. My New Reading Log (+ Free Printable Reading Logs!) by Christine from Buckling Bookshelves - Whenever I check Christine's blog, I always find something new to love. This month was no different! I'd already created my own reading printables before I saw her post, but this is definitely inspiring me to talk about my current reading log. 

2. 2018 Planner Life by Lauren from Bookmark Lit - If you can't tell already, I love anything and everything related to planners. Like me, Lauren has tried a lot of different planners and is always tweaking her system. I loved this update from her, and it was a great reminder that I've got to blog about my Happy Planner soon. Yay for organization nerds!

3. My One Word for 2018 and Read or Die '18 by Alexa from Alexa Loves Books - It's a two-for-one special with Alexa's blog because I had to include both posts! The first inspired me to choose my own word for 2018, though I haven't talked about it yet. And the second is making me think I need to take this type of drastic measure with my own TBR.

I'd love to discover more new-to-me blogs in 2018. 
What are some of your favorites? Please tell me in the comments!

Favorite Song: "I Love You Always Forever" by Betty Who
Although this is a 2016 cover of a 1996 Donna Lewis song, I just found it in January.
I'm not entirely sure why, but I couldn't stop listening to it. I loved blasting in while driving!

The Americans, Season 5, starring Keri Russell and Matthew Rhys - Nick and I watched the first four seasons of this show early in 2017, but the fifth wasn't available on Prime at the time. It recently occurred to us to finally catch up! I love Keri and Matthew, and this season was a good one. I'm interested to see how it all ends this year.

Baby Driver (2017) starring Ansel Elgort, Lily James, Jon Hamm, and Jamie Foxx - This isn't the type of movie that would typically appeal to me, but Nick got it for Christmas so it was an easy choice for one of our movie nights at home. And I actually really enjoyed it! I loved the emphasis on the music and that it was such a stylized action movie. 

Home Again (2017) starring Reese Witherspoon - I had high hopes for this movie because I feel like I haven't seen a great romantic comedy recently. But I was a little unsure of the premise, so I waited until it came to Redbox. I'm glad that's what I did because it was so bland. I just watched it two weeks ago and can barely remember anything about it.

Younger, Season 4, starring Sutton Foster and Hilary Duff - I binged the first three seasons of this show last year, but then I had to wait for the fourth to come to Hulu. When I finally noticed it was available, I immediately dove in and finished it just a few days later. I'm so invested in these characters, and I'm still emotionally processing that finale. OMG.

The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, Season 1, starring Rachel Brosnahan and Alex Borstein - I was curious about this show, and then Knox's green light on The Popcast sealed the deal. With Amy Sherman-Palladino as the creator, it should come as no surprise that the show is fast paced, smart, emotional and off to a promising start. So much fun!

Gift Card: Cultivate by Lara Casey and If You Only Knew by Jamie Ivey

Used Bookstore Credit: Twenties Girl by Sophie Kinsella

Review: The Atomic City Girls by Janet Beard

Kindle: The Almost Sisters by Joshilyn Jackson, My Life as a Country Album by L.J. Evans, Humble Roots by Hannah Anderson, and Dance, Stand, Run by Jess Connolly

NetGalley: How to Walk Away by Katherine Center

Audible: The Alice Network by Kate Quinn and The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson


  1. 6 books is a great achievement :-) I hope you enjoyed all the books you read! You have got to read Twenties Girl by Sophie Kinsella soon, it is amazing!

    1. Thank you so much! I'm really looking forward to reading that one :)

  2. Thanks for sharing my post! Looking forward to hearing more about your own reading log :)

    1. I looooved your post! SO MUCH. And I was so excited to see that we'd been working on similar projects in January. I can't wait to share more about mine & then discuss more with you! You had pages that I hadn't considered and LOVE, so thanks for the extra inspiration <3

  3. I was surprised how much I enjoyed the movie Baby Driver. The music was awesome, and I absolutely adore Lily James.

    1. That's how I felt, too! It's not a movie I'd typically be interested in, but then I enjoyed it so much. The music definitely made it something special!

  4. I saw in a recent blog post of yours that you said that these kind are your favorite kind to write and that you wish they were more popular with your readers. Just to encourage you I'm letting you know that they've always been my favorite and I get excited whenever I see that there's a new one. :)

    1. Oh, thank you so much for the encouragement! That was really lovely to hear :) I'm so glad that you're excited whenever you see one of these posts -- that makes me so happy!

  5. I still have to catch up on Younger because I am so behind! It's such a fun and entertaining show though <3 And January is one of my favorite months of the year, if only because it feels like I have it all together (at least for the first week) :p


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