Books I'm Getting Rid Of {Volume 1}

Spring cleaning time is upon us. Ah...so glorious.

I actually do enjoy a good spring cleaning session. Today is the first free day that I have had in a while, so I spent a few hours cleaning the apartment and doing a bit of purging. One of the areas I have been meaning to give some attention to is my bookshelf. I have books that I don't necessarily want to hold onto, for one reason or another, so it's time to find a new home for them.

Since I often share the new books that I purchase here, I thought it would be fun to also show the books that I decide to "un-haul." There will be others that don't make the cut too...these just happen to be the unluckiest ones on the shelf. There are a total of 14 books in this batch, so let's get into a bit more detail.

*Eclipse and Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer
Did I read the entire Twilight series? Yep! Did I love it when I was in high school? Also, yep! At this point in my life though, I could really care less about having the books on my shelf. This should be obvious, since I only own two of them.

*Masquerade, Revelations, and Blue Bloods by Melissa De La Cruz
These three books are part of what I believe is a much larger series. I have never read them, and at this point, I'm never going to. I'm too old for them, and I don't have the patience to dive into another vampire romance. (I'm pretty sure that's what they're about...correct me if I'm wrong.)

*Sing Me to Sleep by Angela Morrison
I bought this book from Ollie's Bargain Outlet years ago. I can't remember the exact premise of it, because it's been so long since I've read it, but it has something to do with teenagers falling in love via the connection of music. I do remember though, that I was not a fan.

*Being Nikki by Meg Cabot
Meg Cabot was my favorite author through all of my teenage years. I am keeping all of her other books that I own (mainly for nostalgia), but this one is part of a series that I do not have, and really just do not care to invest time in at this point in life.

*Lipstick Jungle, The Carrie Diaries, and Summer and the City by Candace Bushnell
I will never deny the fact that I do love Sex and the City as a television show. However, I just feel there is no need to read any books by Candace Bushnell. Since Lipstick Jungle is a separate story, I did attempt to read it a couple of years ago. I wasn't able to make it through. It's essentially about a group of super rich, materialistic women, and their problems. Meh.

*Lost and Found by Jacqueline Sheehan
This was a bargain book purchase that has been on my shelf for about a year now, and I know I'm not going to read it. I have a really difficult time reading books that involve animals, because they make me really emotional. Does anyone else have this issue?

*Belle: A Retelling of Beauty and the Beast by Cameron Dokey
I tried to read this and was bored out of my mind. I'll stick to the original Beauty and the Beast, thanks.

*True Believer by Nicholas Sparks
Somehow, I had two copies of this. I haven't read either one of them, and I'm not the biggest Nicholas Sparks fan, but I thought I would save one for a rainy day.

*Keeping the Moon by Sarah Dessen
Again, I had two copies of this one. I read this a long, long time ago, and I honestly cannot tell you a thing about it. However, I like Sarah Dessen, and I want to keep at least one copy for my collection.

That's it for my first book purge! Have you been doing any spring cleaning recently? What are you getting rid of?


An Engagement, You Say?

No, that title is NOT click bait! Slade and I are engaged!

We have had fun plans for this past weekend for a while now. We went to Disney on Saturday, then stayed the night in Orlando on Saturday night. The next morning, we drove over to Tampa to see Phantom of the Opera at the Straz Center downtown. We had both been looking forward to the getaway since around Christmas time. Little did I know, Slade was looking forward to it just a little more because he had an extra surprise in store for me. 

You may or may not know, that Phantom of the Opera is one of my absolute favorite things in life. Slade planned this super well, and I'm still in awe that he was able to keep the ring and the engagement plan a secret from me for so long. We are both terrible at keeping fun things secret from each other. 

But, alas, he still managed to completely shock me when he asked me to marry him while we were walking along the Tampa River Walk before the show. A couple of days later, we are both still definitely floating on that "engagement high." Slade and I have known for a while now that we want to get married, but it doesn't make the engagement any less special. 

Side note: I would be the person to get engaged while I have an emoji band-aid on my finger. Oh well...memories!

We are thinking February 2, 2019 is going to be the date. Therefore, the wedding planning is going to commence pretty quickly! I'm very excited to plan! Actually, I"m just generally excited about everything right now ,ha ha.

I'll be back soon with more details! 


The Colorado Post

Has anyone else been sick a ridiculous amount of times this winter? I am currently on day THREE, of being sick for the THIRD time, in the past THREE months. On Saturday evening, I noticed my throat was getting sore. On Sunday morning, it was still sore, but I ignored it and went on to my Pilates/barre classes. 

I did okay throughout Pilates, but could feel my strength slowly declining throughout the barre class. By the end, I couldn't even push up into a plank and I was ridiculously lightheaded. Fast forward to getting home, I took a hot shower and then immediately crawled into bed where I spent the entire day fighting a fever. Slade and I had so many fun Super Bowl plans (Go Eagles!), and I couldn't even participate. Whomp whomp. 

Anyway, I've been home from work for the past two days and my fever is declining every hour. I'm thinking I'll be good to go back to work tomorrow. In the meantime, this felt like a good time to write a little recap of my January trip to Colorado. If you follow me on Instagram, or if you read my review of January, you already know that I went out to visit my best friend Amber. It was a fairly quick trip (four days and three nights), but we packed a lot into it! She lives in the Denver area, but we visited several different places. Here's a look at where we went and what we did.

Keystone Ski Resort
After Amber picked me up from the airport, we immediately left to drive up to Keystone Ski Resort. Let me begin by saying this: I was born and raised in Florida and despite past travels I have never been skiing in my life. So...this fact, combined with the elevation change, the fact that I was running on two hours of sleep, and the fact that I had just had a tooth pulled two days prior, all led to the actual skiing aspect of this trip being a bit of a no-go. I didn't do well, ha ha. 

BUT, the scenery, and the experience of staying at the resort, made up for my failed skiing attempts. Keystone is beautiful, and I really enjoyed the whole experience of just being there. Next time and there will be a next time, I'm going to pay for some actual skiing lessons and give it a second shot. I'm also fully expecting Amber to be a professional by the next time I'm visit. 

P.S. I also hung out with a super cute dog that reminded me so much of my sweet Babybel. 

When we left Keystone, we took a gorgeous drive through to mountains to Breckenridge. This drive was one of my favorite parts of the trip, because everything was covered in snow and just beautiful. Amber even pulled off the road for me at one point so I could take some photos. Breckenridge is the epitome of a cozy little ski town. There are a lot of cute shops, cafes, and restaurants. We got a coffee and did some shopping. 

Downtown Denver
After Breckenridge, we left the mountains and headed back to Denver. I finally got the chance to meet Amber's boyfriend, and we all went to dinner at Bad Daddy's Burger Bar. Their black bean Cantina burger was really good! After dinner, Amber and I had a night out downtown. We went to a dueling piano bar called Howl at the Moon, and it was so much fun! We also went to a couple of other bars that I can't remember the name of. What I do remember, is one of them had pickled vodka shots. I know that sounds gross...but they were delicious. 

On my last full day, we drove over to Boulder. The weather was perfect on this day...clear blue skies and no need to even wear a jacket. Boulder is fun to explore. It's full of a lot of older, charming buildings, and even quite a few street performers. Boulder is a college town, and it's exactly the type of place I would like to attend college if I could go back and do it over again. 

More Denver
My final day was, appropriately, a snow day! We woke up to a LOT of snow, and trust me...it was cold. After a nice brunch at Snooze, us Florida girls attempted to make a snowman. The snow was very fresh and powdery, so it was a difficult endeavor. This certainly left me feeling that I had received the full Colorado experience. 

Colorado is a beautiful state, and the only thing I regret about my time there is the fact that I didn't have more days to spend! I"m so grateful for Amber and our friendship and these fun things that we get to do together. This trip has made me hungry to travel as much as possible in 2018!

Are you taking any fun trips this year? 


January in Review

Happy February 1st! How was your first month of 2018? January was very eventful for me! The beginning of the year is always so full, and this year has been no exception so far. It looked a little something like this...

*My best friend Amber has lived in Colorado for almost three years now, and I finally had the opportunity to go out and visit her! It was so great to have some BFF time, and explore new places. In addition to where she lives in Denver, we visited Keystone Ski Resort (where I completely failed at skiing), Breckenridge (which was adorable), and Boulder (also adorable).

*I continued on with my barre habit this month! I didn't complete as many classes as I would have liked to, but that was mainly due to traveling and having some dental work done.

*I wasn't 100% strict with my diet, but I still mindful of what I ate. I actually lost about 6 pounds, so I'm going to count that as a win.

*My mental health took a hit this month. My anxiety fed off of everything from work, to dental procedures, to living in the past.

*I wrote two blog posts: My First Time Choosing a "Word of the Year" and 2017 Reading Wrap-Up.

*I kicked off the year with a new bullet journal! I did this quite a bit in 2016, but didn't do ANY in 2017. It is by far my favorite way to stay organized, so I'm making it a point to stick to it in 2018. I'm choosing to do a more "minimal" approach, and using all black ink/no stickers/no color/etc.

*Slade and I saw two movies this month...Jumanji and The Greatest Showman.

*I have been OBSESSED with The Greatest Showman. The soundtrack is phenomenal, the story is captivating, and the choreography is fantastic. It is officially one of my favorite musicals ever. I love it.

*As far as TV goes, we have been re-watching The Office. Does it ever get old? The answer is no.

*I finished two books in January...Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (the illustrated edition...such an amazing experience), and The Cuckoo's Calling.

*Both of my jobs were quite taxing throughout January. Teaching ESL is always as adventure, and it's high season at my full-time job. I can honestly say though, that I gave both jobs all of my gusto each day. Also, as of last weekend, I'm officially completely taking Sunday off from this point forward. I need at least one day that I don't have to worry about waking up at 4:30am.

And so, chapter one of twelve is complete! Tell me about the highs and lows of your month. Do you have any exciting plans for February? Let's get going!
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