May 2018: Recap + On My Shelves

May was a month of celebration! From family birthdays to a visit from one of my best friends, it was packed with memories I'll cherish. And I hope it's just the beginning of summertime goodness!

1. My Baby Turns Two – I still can't believe that my baby is growing up so fast! My son, brother and dad all have May birthdays, and we celebrated with a family dinner one night. The best part was that my mom made it all dinosaur themed (my son's current obsession), and it made me feel so loved! So many sweet memories.

2. Kelly Came to Town – Was this the highlight of May? ABSOLUTELY. This was Kelly's third visit to Georgia – in a little more than a year, no less, because she's the best friend ever. We went on new adventures, like a day trip to the North Georgia mountains, but still made time for bookstore browsing and nerding out over our planners.

3. Updating the Blog – It's been a while since I changed my blog theme, and I recently got the urge to make a few updates. After browsing around, I found Maira Gall's shop on Etsy and am so pleased with the result. I loved being able to customize the theme so that it had the same overall look but with new functionality.

4. All the Afternoons Outside – The weather in May was gorgeous, so we spent most of our afternoons outside soaking up the sun. Our days were filled with dance parties, dinner picnics, running through the sprinklers, digging in the dirt, and playing in his new house. And I got some reading done, too!

Read 13 Books | Favorites:
The Long Game by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Beartown by Fredrik Backman
Someone to Care by Mary Balogh

“Planning can't save you from everything. Change is inevitable and uncertainty is a given.
And if you plan so much that you can't function without one, life's no fun.
All the calendars, journals, and lists in the world won't save you when the sky falls.”
Starry Eyes by Jenn Bennett

 “Hate can be a deeply stimulating emotion. The world becomes easier to understand
and much less terrifying if you divide everything and everyone into friends and enemies,
we and they, good and evil. The easiest way to unite a group isn't through love,
because love is hard. It makes demands. Hate is simple.
So the first thing that happens in a conflict is that we choose a side,
because that's easier than trying to hold two thoughts in our heads at the same time.
The second thing that happens is that we seek out facts that confirm what we want to believe –
comforting facts, ones that permit life to go on as normal. The third is that we dehumanize our enemy.”
Beartown by Fredrik Backman

 “Bitterness can be corrosive. It can rewrite your memories as if it were scrubbing a crime scene clean,
until in the end you only remember what suits you of its causes.”
Beartown by Fredrik Backman

 “The seasons teach us how to do life well, revealing a life-giving rhythm:
we flourish through intentional periods of stillness, growth, hard work, and rest.”
Cultivate by Lara Casey

 “Alaska herself can be Sleeping Beauty one minute and a bitch with a sawed-off shotgun the next.
There's a saying: Up here you can make one mistake. The second one will kill you.”
The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah

I kicked off the month with a post that I'd been meaning to write for a long time. In honor of my son's birthday, I chatted about how I'm writing my story of motherhood. It was nice to reflect on the highs and lows of this season of my life – and finally chat about how a certain book taught me to be more grateful! 

After that post, I shared my April 2018 Recap and reviewed 14 recent reads in my April 2018 Quick Lit. I posted three series reviews throughout the month: for The Devil Riders Series by Anne Gracie, The Tudor Legacy Series by Laura Andersen (which I read because of a bet!), and The Huxtable Quintet by Mary Balogh. And I posted a full-length review for A Court of Frost and Starlight by Sarah J. Maas.

I chatted about five things I've been loving lately and want to do more posts like this one in the future. It's fun to focus on a few mini obsessions! I think my favorite post was my 15 Ways to Treat Your Royal Wedding Fever gift guide. I had fun compiling royals-inspired items – and added a few to my wishlist! Finally, I was inspired by Cristina and talked about Eight Low-Rated Books I Enjoyed and Eight Highly-Rated Books I Didn't Like

1. All Apologies... No More by Christine from Bookishly Boisterous – I have to thank Christine from Buckling Bookshelves for putting this post (and blog) on my radar. I've often struggled with feeling like I have to justify purchases, but this was a nice reminder that I don't have to feel guilty about my love of buying books.

2. Why I Re-Read by Lisa from Bookshelf Fantasies – This is another post that was on my radar because of Christine! I can never resist clicking on anything that talks about re-reading because it's one of my favorite things. I loved all the different reasons that Lisa mentioned – some of which I'd never articulated before! 

3. Me, My Dad & Books by Rachel from Hello, Chelly – Ah, I love personal posts from my friends! This one was particularly sweet, and I can't wait to see an update in the future as Rachel reads her dad's five favorite classics. (But I don't envy her having to re-read Wuthering Heights because I can't stand that book...)

4. The 2018 Summer Reading Guide by Anne from Modern Mrs. Darcy – I always look forward to this summer reading guide! Anne curates a fantastic mix of books, and I always find new things that I want to pick up. I've already read some of the books on this list and have put holds on many more at the library. 

5. Literary Roundup: Summer Reading Guides by Elisabeth from Lit & Leisure – I found this while browsing Twitter one day and immediately bookmarked it. Elisabeth has rounded up various summer reading guides from major publications, and I love having them all gathered in one place. I've already added more to my summer TBR!

6. The K-Beauty 10-Step from Soko Glam – I got on a major skincare kick in May and spent wayyyy too much time watching beauty-related YouTube videos and researching new products to try. Of course, I'm now convinced that I can commit to the 10-step process outlined in this article. Only time will tell... Haha!

Favorite Album: Electric Light by James Bay
I loved James Bay's debut album and couldn't wait for this release.
It's going to take a few listens for this to become a favorite, but I've been enjoying it!

Favorite Playlist: The Winner's Trilogy 
I saw someone link to a bookish-inspired Spotify playlist in an Instagram story,
and then I spent a long time finding tons more. This was my most-played one in May!

Favorite Audios: Heir of Fire, Queen of Shadows and Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas
narrated by Elizabeth Evans
After reading A Court of Frost and Starlight, I was in the mood for more Maas.
I ended up re-reading these three books via audio, which was an excellent decision. I love this narrator!

The Wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry – I pre-gamed the night before the wedding by watching their Lifetime movie and snark-texting Kelly throughout. But I was still excited to wake up the next morning and watching the wedding live! As an Anglophile, I just can't resist the royals. It brought back good memories of watching William and Kate's wedding when I was in college. How gorgeous are those flowers?!

The Americans, Season 6, starring Matthew Rhys and Keri Russell – Nick and I binged the first five seasons of this show in the past year, and we'd been anxiously awaiting the sixth and final season. I'm glad it ended when it did because I never got tired of it or felt that it had gone off course. The finale was so emotional and unexpected!

New Releases: A Court of Frost and Starlight by Sarah J. Maas, My Oxford Year by Julia Whelan and Someone to Care by Mary Balogh 

Used Bookstores: The Boleyn Deceit and The Boleyn Reckoning by Laura Andersen

Gifted: The Boleyn King and The Virgin's War by Laura Andersen (thanks, Kelly!)

Kindle: The Alice Network by Kate Quinn, Making Up by Lucy Parker and The Hating Game by Sally Thorne

Audible: A Court of Frost and Starlight by Sarah J. Maas

Review: Us Against You by Fredrik Backman


  1. Honestly the full 10-step Korean skincare doesn't take as much time as you think...I started doing it like a year and a half ago, and it was pretty easy to integrate it into my morning routine!

  2. I love these recap posts. I always get so many ideas and new blogs out of it!

    When William and Kate got married my family and I were on vacation at Williamsburg VA, and I can still remember crawling out of bed and meeting my mother in the shared living room of our hotel room to groggily await the first sighting of Kate's dress! Later that day we were having lunch and listening to all the tables around us talk about the wedding!

  3. You're welcome! I really enjoy both of those blogs -- and those particular posts you shared! Which reminds me, I'm overdue for a new link round-up -- there is never a shortage of great posts in this corner of the bookish internet :) :)

  4. We both know that I'm obsessed with James Bay! Electric Light took a couple of listens, but now it's on regular rotation for me.


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