A Day in London

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After spending nine days traveling around England, the only regret I have is not spending a longer time in London. One day is simply not long enough to see and do everything that the massive city has to offer. However, I am pretty proud of the amount of stuff we fit in in that one day. We started off the day in an Imperial War museum and from there we decided to hop on a bus to take us to the west end of London. We spent some of the day hunting for the best scones in London (The best we had was at the Waldorf Hotel!) and going into all the stores Covent Garden had to offer. We ended the day on a bus doing a final loop of the city so we could see everything we missed when walking.  While we were on the bus everyone was so excited because we were supposed to pass Buckingham Palace and just as we were about to approach it the bus driver turned the other way. Probably the biggest disappointment of the day because we were SO CLOSE!

So that was our twenty-four hours in London. I am not a city person but I loved London. I loved that so many people were walking around or riding bikes (SO many bikes) and that since the city was so huge there is always places to go and things to see. Now I am looking forward to going back some day because there is so much more I want to see and do.

Changes and Updates

Wow. How long has it been this time? three months? four? However long its been, I am back. Three years is how long I have had this blog. I have switched the blog name, subject, format, and a thousand other little things over that time and here I am again….. talking about making more changes. I really can not promise that this will be the last big change I make… I am super indecisive.

I am definitely the only one here that remembers all my different subject changes: from fashion and lifestyle to books and lifestyle to mainly books and travel. Every time I made a knew change I would love it for a month and then get bored of it the next. So I have decided to open my blog to anything. Anything and everything. How can I get bored with that? *fingers crossed I won’t*

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Now moving on to the updates. I recently went to the beach for spring break and I wanted to share some of my pictures. It was pretty chilly so there was no swimming or tanning but it was a relaxing vacation before being dragged back to school.

So there was my (rather short) update. Hopefully there will be more posts to come this summer. Currently without a summer job, so I need something to keep me busy!

Books That Have Me Wishing Summer Was Here Already

img_2822img_2823img_2825I love the winter and cold weather but by February when mother nature is giving us glimpses of warm weather I suddenly find myself wishing for summer. With spring approaching pretty fast I decided to compile a list of books that I love to read whilst sitting on my deck enjoying the warm weather. Comment down below and tell me what summer books are your favorite!

Summer Sister by Judy Blume– When I read this book I honestly did not think I would like it so I was surprised when I found myself unable to put it down. Since reading it I have reread it every summer and it seriously puts me in the summery mood.

Since You’ve Been Gone by Morgan Matson– This book makes me wish I could spend my whole summer following a list my friend gave me. I would never be bored, which sounds pretty exciting. The challenges are fun and weird and it is the perfect book to sit on the deck and read.

Nantucket Blue by Leila Howland– Why I decided to read this during the winter… I have no idea. A summer romance can’t not make you wish summer was here.

With Malice by Eileen Cook– A summer mystery will really make you wish you were back on the beach tanning and reading.

Wanderlost by Jen Malone– I know that I talk about this book all the time but it is one of my absolute favorites. A book about summer romance and traveling. How can you not love it?

I am sorry if this post made you really sad that summer is not here and you have to go to school tomorrow. It made me sad just writing it. I am not saying these books will make it better…they are not magic!! But maybe reading them will make you forget that it is actually five degrees out instead of ninety.

 

 

 

Just as Good as the First- Mischief and Magnolias Review

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Author: Kristi Cook

Genre: YA, Contemporary, Romance

Rate: 4 stars

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When Ryder Marsden and Jemma Cafferty return to Magnolia Branch for Christmas break following their first semester at their respective universities in New York City (Columbia and NYU), their secret relationship is revealed—they’re literally caught under the mistletoe, kissing. Unexpectedly, their parents—who’ve spent their entire lives pushing them together—are somehow less than thrilled, especially when they realize the depth of their deception.

Tensions mount as the Marsden and Cafferty families struggle to come to terms with Jemma’s and Ryder’s feelings for each other, especially as they prepare to send them back to New York City together. At the same time, Jemma and Ryder must face their own problems that have arisen as a result of attending different schools—there are jealousies to be sorted out and hurt feelings to mend if their relationship is going to stand the test of time.

Will their love last, or are they star-crossed lovers, after all?

HAVE BEEN WAITING FOR THIS BOOK and it is finally here and I read it and I loved it. I read Magnolia for the first time last year and read it again a couple of months ago. I love cute southern stories and this one is one of my all time favorites. The only thing that bummed me out was that it was a novella so it was shorter and I wish it came out during Christmas because that is the time of year the book is set in. However I think I can look past those small details because I am just happy it came out at all.

This book starts around a year after the first book ended and in that year Jemma and Ryder still kept their relationship a secret! I mean can you blame the parents for being upset?? One thing that I loved was that Jemma and Ryder still acted as if they had just gotten together which makes the book so cute! Oh… and getting glimpses into the other characters lives was so exciting because every time an old character was in the story I was thinking “I forgot about him!” or “I remember her!”

My biggest issue with this book was that Kristi Cook did not go into depth when problems arose. The problems resolved pretty quickly but I guess that is because the book was so short?

Anyways… I loved this story and I think it was an amazing ending to the Magnolia books. This book is purely a feel-good book and perfect if you are in the mood for a cute short read. I feel like because this book went by rather quickly there is not much to say about it other than it was amazing and you should go and read it so you can find out for yourself! Tell me down below what you thought of the book

 

Unexpected YA Let Downs

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Reading about new books coming out and adding them to my TBR is one of my favorite activities…. which probably just proves how big of a bookworm I am! Anyways, it is always a disapointment when you finally decide to read a book you are so excited about and then you end up barely getting through the book. It makes me want to yell at myself for getting my hopes up but it doesn’t stop me from becoming excited about another book. So because recently I have been in a book slump and and am having a horrible time finding a book I want to read I decided to create a list of books that have let me down in the past. Probably not the best way to get me out of my slump but what am I going to do?

The Loose Ends List by Carrie Firestone- The main problem with this book was the plot and the underdeveloped characters. So basically the whole book. I was so excited to read this book but…. 1. I could not relate to the main character and 2. the plot got a little weird for me. The grandmother about to pass made the story sad but the whole death boat cruise thing made it all extremely sad and a bit too weird for me.

The Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han- OK….. To All the Boys I Loved Before had me believing that I would love anything Jenny Han wrote. So I went into reading this series so excited and was completely surprised when I found myself having trouble finishing the book.

Two Summers by Aimee Friedman- I love all books that have to do with travel, except this one. It was cute but I think the characters were not developed enough and some parts were even too cheesy for me (which is saying a lot because I LOVE cheesy books!)

Summer in the Invisible City by Juliana Romano- I could not relate to this book which is 100 percent the reason why I did not like it. I found myself getting extremely annoyed with the main character which was probably the biggest sign that this book was not for me.

My Unscripted Life by Lauren Morrill- This was one of those books that I had kept in my TBR list months before it was supposed to come out. When I was finally able to read it I found it boring at times which was so unexpected and such a let down.

GIVE ME BOOKS TO READ DOWN BELOW BECAUSE I NEED TO GET OUT OF THIS SLUMP!

Series I Have Yet to Finish Because I Get Distracted

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Lately I have been having trouble figuring out what books to read next. So it lead to me to look through the to-read books on Goodreads. Scrolling through all those books I past the ones I have been meaning to read for forever! So I decided to compile a list so that it might help me remember to finish these series!!

Rebel Belle by Rachel Hawkins– I read Rebel Belle because I was craving a nice southern romance story. Well this book kind of made me confused with the whole Paladin and magic issue so I was never itching to read the second book.

The Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han– I love Jenny Han and the To All The Boys I Loved Before series so I am not sure why I never finished this series. I totally forgot about this series until writing this post so maybe I should finish it now while I still remember it.

Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling– I am completely and totally embarrassed to admit that I have yet to finish the Harry Potter books. When I say that I did not finish I mean that I only read one book. I feel like it is a crime but I keep telling myself I will read them and then another book comes along and well….. as I said in the title, I get distracted!

Divergent by Veronica Roth– I was actually surprised that I liked this book but then more cute/feel-good books came out and I was drawn to them instead. Still have not gotten the motivation to read the second book.

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins– Honestly the only reason I did not finish reading The Hunger Games is because I did not like it. At all. So I did not get distracted, I deliberately got rid of the first book and tried to forget about what I had just read.

Valentine’s Day Reads

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If you are anything like me, you will probably be spending Valentine’s Day sitting at home reading some sappy book while simultaneously watching the movie Valentine’s Day!  This year I decided to compile a bunch of books that you might want to read this Valentine’s Day.

Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins– Since it is Valentine’s Day I had to put in one of the cutest books I have ever read. Im sorry if you are rolling your eyes at me right now… I just could not stop myself.

Since You’ve been Gone by Morgan Matson– I think I have said before that the reason I love Morgan Matson is because her books include romance but also deals with other issues like friendship and family. So if you are looking for a book with romance not being the main focus this book should work for you.

Wanderlust by Jen Malone– Yes, this is another book that has a lot of romance. But this book is one of my favorites and it includes traveling which makes it a thousand times better.

My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick– I love this book. It is so cute and there is this huge issue at the end that really keeps you reading.

With Malice by Eileen Cook– If on Valentines Day you really are not feeling a romantic book try this. A young adult mystery/thriller might be exactly what you are looking.

So I know almost all of them are sappy romantic books but hey…. it is Valentine’s Day!! What books are you reading this Valentine’s Day? I need suggestions or I might just end up rereading all of these books!

 

Favorite Book of the Month- January 2017

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Summary:

Simon Snow is the worst chosen one who’s ever been chosen

That’s what his roommate, Baz, says. And Baz might be evil and a vampire and a complete git, but he’s probably right.

Half the time Simon can’t even make his wand work, and the other half, he sets something on fire. His mentor’s avoiding him, his girlfriend broke up with him, and there’s a magic-eating monster running around wearing Simon’s face. Baz would be having a field day with all this, if he were here – it’s their last year at Watford School of Magicks, and Simon’s infuriating nemesis didn’t even bother to show up.

Carry On is a love letter to love stories and the power of words – to every ‘chosen one’ who ever had more on their mind than saving the world…

Author: Rainbow Rowell

Genre: YA, Romance, Fantasy

Rate: 5 stars

This was one book the I was honestly not expecting to love but I am starting to realize the books that I am least excited to read are the ones I like the most. I loved Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell but after reading the summary for Carry On I decided that it was not my type of book. I assumed it would be boring and I would end up getting confused but because of reviews I have read and by how much I liked Fangirl I decided to try it.

For starters I loved the main character, Simon Snow. He was a bit weird and was totally unsure of himself when he was using magic, which is kind of ironic because he is supposed to save magic by using his own magic. The fact that he was a bit weird and awkward made this book so relatable because Rainbow Rowell was not portraying him as this superior chosen one who had no flaws. His friend was even better, Penelope did remind me of Hermoine at first, which concerned me, but throughout the book she completely grew to become her own person who was spunky and outgoing and…… ahhhh this book had so many good characters.

Baz. His POVs were my favorite. He seemed like this dark and mysterious character and then you get a glimpse inside his head and you instantly love him. Even if he is supposed to bad.

The last sentence of the summary perfectly describes the book and is what I loved most about this story. It is not all about Simon Snow saving the world because he is a teenager with other things going on in his mind.

I am going to stop there because since I am making this book my favorite of the month you  know I absolutely LOVED ALL 518 PAGES OF IT and you just have to read it to know why.

Defending Taylor Book Review

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Summary: 

There are no mistakes in love.

Captain of the soccer team, president of the Debate Club, contender for valedictorian: Taylor’s always pushed herself to be perfect. After all, that’s what is expected of a senator’s daughter. But one impulsive decision-one lie to cover for her boyfriend-and Taylor’s kicked out of private school. Everything she’s worked so hard for is gone, and now she’s starting over at Hundred Oaks High.

Soccer has always been Taylor’s escape from the pressures of school and family, but it’s hard to fit in and play on a team that used to be her rival. The only person who seems to understand all that she’s going through is her older brother’s best friend, Ezra. Taylor’s had a crush on him for as long as she can remember. But it’s hard to trust after having been betrayed. Will Taylor repeat her past mistakes or can she score a fresh start?

Author: Miranda Kenneally 

Genre: YA, Romance, Contemporary

Rate: 4 stars

I did not start reading the Hundred Oaks series until this summer. I just always assumed I would not like the books. Then one day I decided to read Catching Jordan, and I could not put it down, next thing I know I am done the first six books in the series within a couple of weeks. After writing my post about books I still haven’t read I decided to go ahead and read  Defending Taylor, and was I the only one getting The Wrong Side of Right flashbacks?… but in a good way, of course.

I should say that it was not in any way identical to The Wrong Side of Right, which is one of my favorite books. Both books had a father running for election for some government position and both had a daughter who managed to mess things up somehow . For some reason I love books that have fathers or other family members working in government because I feel as if it creates another set of issues that does not include boy problems.

When you think about Miranda Keneally’s books it might seem as if all the books are about  falling for a guy in high school (seriously what is in that schools water??) but I liked this book because it dealt with issues like family and life choices. One down fall was that it only touched on the drug issue. I would have liked it to delve further into that topic, but I do not think that was what Keneally wanted. Taylor’s family also was not my favorite part of this book because I felt they were putting to much pressure on a seventeen year old. AND the romance might have gone a little to fast for me, I felt that there was not enough build up. I do have mixed feelings on that though because some books also have the opposite problem where the book just ends right when they get together and I am left wanting to know more.

So by that last paragraph you might be questioning if I actually liked the book, but I did. The flaws in this book were not big enough for me to want to stop reading or label it as my least favorite book in the series. I do not think out of all these books I have a least favorite! This book makes you think about your choices and aspirations in life and choosing to do something different with your future. Oh, and lets not forget about the cute romance that Keneally always includes.

Those of you who loved Catching Jordan but have chose not read this…. CHANGE YOUR MIND because there may or may not be a really short story about Jordan in the back of the book….. (if that does not change your mind then I do not know what else to tell you)

Gilmore Girls Cookbook

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*This book is the unofficial cookbook for Gilmore Girls fans*

I think I squealed a little when I found out this was an actual book. My mom, sister and I are obsessed with Gilmore Girls and have been watching it for years. It started when it was on ABC Family (or freeform?) around dinner time (does anyone else remember that??) and we would sit around the kitchen and watch the episodes. Over the years we have watched the episodes 100000 times and even went as far as to buy all the seven seasons on DVD. Then it came on Netflix so I guess buying the episodes was kind of unnecessary.

THEN NETFLIX MADE MORE EPISODES and it was the best part of 2016. So of course being a Gilmore Girls obsessed person I just had to buy the cookbook. Each recipe reminds you of a different episode and makes you wish you had Suki as your best friend to make you all the recipes. I am definitely going to try and make some of these recipes and pretend I am in Stars Hallow sitting at Lukes Diner.

This book was such a good idea and I love how Kristi Carlson would talk about what episode each recipe is from. If you have the cookbook, what do you think of it? and if you watched the new episodes on Netflix, what did you think of them because I still don’t know what to make of it!!