• Daily Life

    #lavinewyear Lavendaire 10 Days of Growth: Days 1-4

    Lavendaire (I have trouble spelling Lavender, and that follows through to Lavendaire, I keep wanting to add a’s instead of e’s) is the first Youtuber to get me motivated to just plan my life. I think it was the end of 2018? She just has such a feminine, calm aesthetic and tone which I love while so many goal sort of people are more fast-paced, loud, masculine, bold, and just too fast and too much for this little snail right here. I guess I just felt that goals felt more attainable or appealing for my personality after seeing her videos, a gentle nudge in the right direction rather than a drill-sergeant.

    I tend to follow more of Muchelle B’s stuff more recently (again, a soft aesthetic and a way of planning that just speaks to my brain language), and I went through a lot of her videos in my new year planning (more on that when I actually am finished, January is more of my planning, restart, prep month). But I felt that I hadn’t watched much Lavendaire lately and when she had this 10 Days of Growth Challenge, I thought I’d like to do it, and it’s just so refreshing and simple. I signed up late and you still get the emails one at a time so its gently paced.

    I had a lot more to-do’s and plans written out this year because I wanted to work things in while I think my goals were more in my head and similar to last year, so for day one I distilled I guess much of that down into the three life-changing goals:

    1. I want to get into the habit of enjoying life and making memories. So for day two I counted that I went to see Little Women. It’s kind of a big deal for me to go to the movie theater. I used to think oh, I can usually wait unless its something I KNOW I will adore, but the last year or so, I realized while I do want it to be special, I can still go a little more often for the experience (I think Star Wars and Aladdin really emphasized that, and I really wish I’d gone for Endgame, live and learn).
    2. I want to be healthy
    3. I want to be financially secure and healthy and independent

    Day 3 I read 15+ pages of Whose Body the first Lord Peter Wimsey mystery. I was re-reading Narnia as a Christmas treat to myself but got a bit stuck (I’m an extreme mood reader and my January treat of rereading the Lord Peter Wimsey mysteries felt more in tune with my mood).

    Day 4 is creating a vision board.

    I’ve heard a lot about vision boards but I tend to resist them or want to overdo them or think I will ignore them, but I decided I could do a small Pinterest board for this year, and I could check back on it from time to time. I think maybe it would be fun to do a vision board success board of MY photos to sort of match those of my vision board that I’ve actually achieved.

    The pins I chose I hope reflect: holistic health, healthy size for me, exercise, nature; a more “me” style; spending more money on experiences like travel, taking craft and art classes and seeing traveling broadway shows (already bought my Anastasia tickets, another big deal for me); getting a car and my own place; alternative income streams and working on my current career path; keeping my memories in a pretty journal; and reading well.



  • Daily Life

    Sunshine Blogger Award

    PioneerGirl tagged me in the Sunshine Blogger award.

    1. What is your favorite book series?

    I’ve lots of favorites, but since I’m planning on re-reading Narnia in December and have been rewatching the movies, I’ll go with that.

    2. If you were a mythical creature what would you be?

    A unicorn maybe or a Pegasus? If we’re going by personality, dragon.

    3. If you were a cup of tea what kind would you be?

    Barely tastes like tea raspberry ice tea. Rarely care for hot beverages, don’t care for the taste of tea uselly.

    4. What is something you have learned and taught someone else?

    I think I’ve tried to teach some people knitting.

    5. Do you have a hobby, and if so, what is it?

    I’ve lots of hobbies, but I’m currently burned out. Knitting is my main one, but I haven’t knitted in months. However, something knitted is part of my Christmas outfit, and I’ve a baby blanket due, so I will be knitting a lot this month.

    6. What is your favorite dessert?

    Anything chocolate, especially cake. But also many things cake.

    7. f you could be best friends with a literary character who would it be?

    I don’t know, I’m not a “best friend” type of person. I’m more a “best sibling group” like the Penderwicks or maybe a “best friend group” the sets of friends in L.M. Montgomery books.

    8. If you had to choose only one form of communication to use for the rest of your life what would it be?

    Talking. I think I’d go insane if I could only write.

    9. What is the best way someone has understood you?

    Agreeing with me and meaning it, I suppose.

    10. What would you do if you had the time to do it?

    I think motivation and laziness, not time are my worst enemies. Learn everything, make everything.

    11. “How is a raven like a writing desk?”

    I’m terrible understanding riddles like this, sorry.

  • Daily Life

    What I’ve Been Up to Lately

    Looking forward to and trying to save for Christmas, Ladies’ Shopping Day, possibly two art/Christmas Festivals, and Black Friday. I’ve set up a fun money account, but I keep emptying it because I over spend. We’ve already drawn names among the siblings with the Draw Names site and most people have their gift list. I need a second job.

    Not reading scary books. For one thing, I’ve really fallen into a reading slump. I’m really looking forward to my Narnia plan for December. For another, I don’t want to read scary books. Also, making a too strict and long list is a sure fire way for me not to read anything on said list. However, I’m keeping my Fall/Autumn list for future seasons, maybe I’ll read one book each season. I’m still aiming for a reread of The Tenant of Wildfell Hall because I want to watch the miniseries.

    Watching tons of Youtube. That has been a theme of this year. I’ll post some of the my recent favs in another post.

    Waiting for Disney+, it’s a little over a week peoples!

    Working on routines. My morning routine is timed down to five minute intervals in some sections with even such things as brushing my teeth and warming up my car included because I’m that much of a late person, but also because I want to get a lot done (this is a relative term, my a lot is very small apparently) in the morning since I’m usually brain-dead when I get back from work.

    Trying to work on preparing my own food. I tried HelloFresh because of their first time offers. It was lovely, and I have some new recipes to try and new recipe/meal structures to build on. However, it’s too expensive to use regularly, and I’m not high-energy, so I want to get into a two day a week cooking/meal prep schedule. We’ll see. I’d would like to make my way through the meal-planning services, using their first-time codes.

    Working on my Spanish on Duolingo. I was working on this for the first half of the year pretty consistently. I fell off of that for a few months, but I’ve been doing it almost every day for the last two months, I think. The concept of streaks and setting high XP points don’t really work well with my rebelliousness, but the concept of leagues works with my competitiveness, so my average daily XP has risen exponentially, and I’ve maintained a 30+ day streak (I missed at one day, that’s way it’s not 60+). And it’s been so fun to see my much faster progress through my tree. I’m going to try to add extra Spanish grammar and vocab on the weekends. I’m getting to the point where I need that.

    Speaking of Duolingo, I was super-excited to see their Latin course. I will say though, I think learning the grammar first is the best way to learn Latin, at least for non-Romance Language first language speakers, and especially for us really-without-a-grammar-structure English speakers, because it sets you up to understand the grammar structure, of for example, Spanish. However, because I took Latin in college, I’d like to go back and learn more vocab (helpful for English speakers as most of our vocab is Latin-based and for anyone learning a Romance language and for anyone interested in Classical education).

    Becoming more interested in Audible this year. It’s paused now, but I’ve taken advantage of the buy-three at a discount to stock up on books. I’m going to listen to Narnia as I follow along in the colored-illustration version in December. I also have a ton of BBC radio dramas on my list. However, I’ve been low on the attention-span and high on the irritability lately, so I haven’t been even listening to music much at work. So basically, I’m just burned out overall. Or tired. Or both.

    Obsessing over my sleep habits. Being a princess and the pea seems to be hereditary. My purchases these last couple of years for sleeping have included a weighted blanked, tons of earplugs, a sleep mask, a sound machine, outside door weatherproofing stripping, and a sound curtain for the door (which I haven’t hung and not sure how I can use, might have to get a different one and just put that behind the book shelf?). This sleep issue is a work in progress.

    Working on my style. I’d fallen into a rut with my weight gain. But my renewed interest in hair and make-up and more strategic fall purchases as well as my new morning routine have significantly helped me in this area. Also, tons of inspiration from Youtube.

    A lot on this list hinges on habits and routines. I’ve been learning and thinking a lot about that this year.



  • Daily Life

    Fall Fun List

    I was sorta trying to train myself to say “autumn,” I don’t think that is going to work, especially when you can say “Fall Fun.” Just too easy.

    First things first: Girls during fall be like.. 2019 Edition

    Since summer flew by me without me doing anything (my fastest speed is “turtle” my slowest speed is “snail” which must be what I’m doing currently), I thought I’d plan out my fall, putting movies, books, food, and activities into my calendar.

    My list for books was originally:

    • Dracula
    • Poe
    • The Tenant of Wildfell Hall (reread)
    • Something Wicked This Way Comes
    • Call of the Wild

    But I’ve since happened upon this list of spooky short stories from Modern Mrs. Darcy, and I’d like to add list add the Montgomery book, but I’d like try all those not on my list except Du Maurier, I just don’t get her appeal, and Christie (I’ve probably read a lot of those, plus don’t tend to love her short stories).

    For all of these we shall see, it’s odd that I can read murder mysteries, I’m not drawn to dark books, I certainly can be freaked out by them, but I think that a lot of these are psychological which I REALLY don’t do or wilderness/animal. Yeah. We’ll see. If I think they are too dark, twisted, and/or sadistic, I won’t be reading them.

    For movies/visual media I have:

    • Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell (It’s amazing how little impression that book made on my mind for its size and it’s subject/genre, was it overhyped or is it just me? I feel like it was my kind of thing, but I forgot it very quickly after reading it, usually forget it’s existence, perhaps because there needed to be a sequel? Anyhow, some where I saw the miniseries again, I’m sure I knew of it before, and it seemed to fit this season).
    • A Tenant of Wildfell Hall (I love Toby Stephens, and when I saw that he featured in the adaption available on Amazon Prime, I knew I needed to re-read the story to refresh my mind before I watched it).
    • After/if I manage to read some Poe, I want to try the webseries, A Tell Tale Vlog, I’ve had on my mind for years (but never managed to read anymore Poe, wonder why). It’s weird how popular (or just to nerds?) and transient the webseries phase was. The way media is developing, it seems like more could have been made of it?
    • Spellbound

    For audio media I have (the music in this list is from this previous Fall/Autumn mood post):

    For food I have:

    • Oatmeal Pancakes
    • Cardamon Buns
    • Gingerbread
    • Gingersnaps
    • Pumpkin Bread
    • Pumpkin Muffins
    • Pumpkin Truffles
    • Pumpkin Pancakes (maybe)
    • Maple Rolls
    • Maple Cookies
    • This Ghost Cake (the design, I’ll probably stick with Hershey’s tried and true chocolate cake with dark chocolate cocoa)
    • Spice doughnuts
    • Sweet Potato Casserole
    • Chicken Potpie
    • Mac n Cheese
    • Soups
    • Breads

    Activities (most of those that involve leaving the house are possibilities rather than probabilities):

    • Maple festival
    • Zoo
    • Bonfire and s’mores
    • Broadway (the traveling shows that come to various cities)
    • Ladies’ Shopping Day
    • Thanksgiving
    • Sew velvet pumpkins and squash, make some foxes, plan Xmas dress
    • Miniatures/models
    • Fall puzzle
    • Concert?
  • Daily Life

    Update and Sunshine Blogger Award

    I’ve been pretty burned out lately (clearly that doesn’t take much to happen), and I opted out of the Jane Austen festival. Oh, well, I’ll have a head start for next year. I do have some projects I finished and vacation photos, but I’ll have to wait until I have more motivation. Meanwhile Ivy Miranda at Revealed in Time nominated me for this tag. Considered yourself tagged if you want to answer her questions.

    1.) Favorite time period? Probably depends on what movies I’m watching or books I’m reading. I’m really loving old screwball (30’s, 40’s) comedies lately with the glamorous gowns.

    2.) What fictional character (from either book or television) would you want to be? I’d like to stay me but be in an L.M. Montgomery novel.

    3.) What three wishes would you ask the Genie from Aladdin? To give me the career I would love, to make me a more beautiful version of myself, to give me poise.

    4.) Would you rather raid the Galaxy with Han Solo or dig up relics with Indiana Jones? Raid with Hans, more exciting (yet easier to run away) plus less skeletons (I HATE skeletons, used to be one of my phobias, not sure it is phobia level right now).

    5.) What frightens you the most? Being powerless.

    6.) Do you collect anything? Intentionally? Teacups, sort of, which is ironic since I don’t really care for tea. Unintentionally: fabric, yarn, etc.

    7.) Do you like the supernatural (vampires, werewolves, etc.)? If so, what are your favorites? I have to say I’ve not read much of this (easily frightened plus lots of the books are quite silly). Vampires SEEM more attractive, but I think they’d be more dangerous, plus I was team Jacob (in the books, never seen the movies and don’t find Taylor Lautner attractive).

    8.) What is the first song you remember hearing? Probably a hymn, “Joyful Joyful, We Adore Thee” was an early favorite.

    9.) What’s the most amount of books you’ve read? In a year, as an adult? 140 last year, but many of those were rereads.

    10.) Whose your favorite and least favorite celebrity? Whoever I have the biggest crush on at the moment and whoever is the most obnoxious at the moment.

    11.) What is your favorite candy or dessert? (you can answer both). Most of them? I’m like all-sweet tooth.

  • Daily Life

    5 Things Tag

    Mother's Day Card

    Eva and Olivia did this tag recently, and I thought it would be fun to steal it.

    5 Things You’ll Find in My Purse

    I don’t think I have anything unusual in my purse, also, I have a smallish, crossbody since that seems to work best for my current situation, so not much will fit in, although I’ve managed to squeeze in a paperback before.

    1. Timecard for my temp job
    2. Various papers, cards, etc. related to my (will remain unnamed) side gig
    3. New sunglasses
    4. Pens
    5. Tiny notepad

    5 Things You’ll Find in My Bedroom

    1. A hoarder’s supply of yarn
    2. A hoarder’s supply of fabric
    3. A hoarder’s supply of toiletries
    4. Books including some of the 52 (the two interlibrary loans were allowed past the 50 limit) library books I have out. The rest are with me at my grandparents
    5. A budding collector’s supply of pens and markers (this is what happens when you watch bullet journal videos)

    5 Things I’ve Always Wanted to Do

    1. Make a full regency outfit for the Jane Austen festival (I’m hoping I will manage that for this year)
    2. Go to England and Ireland (at least, I theoretically want to travel, but I can’t seem to make myself drive out of my city, or even really into it)
    3. Be fit
    4. Sew a considerable portion of my wardrobe (part of the hang-up here relates to 3)
    5. Be proficient in a multitude of art mediums and handicrafts (I’m learning to streamline this)

    5 Things That Make Me Feel Happy

    1. Watching tv with my grandparents
    2. Holding my precious, baby niece
    3. Cuddling my sister’s precious mini cat (she looks like a kitten, courtesy of being a runt, but she’s grown)
    4. I have to steal Olivia’s because this is especially true for me this year, finishing a book and updating my Goodreads to reflect that. I then look at how I’m (currently) crushing my reading goals
    5. Similarly, using my mildliners to fill out the squares of my habit chart

    5 Things I’m Currently/Was Recently Into (I feel like I’m in between things)

    1. Mary Stewart romantic suspense novels. I know I’ve not ranked some of them high, but that is because I didn’t like the romance part of these particular ones. When thinking over this, I realized I kind of have three separate rating systems/points: morality, quality, and likeability. I usually focus on the first two and usually the first two are what affects my liking or finishing the book or not. But occasionally I find book that meet these standards but not the last.
    2. M.M. Kaye mysteries (she only wrote a few, and I think I’ve exhausted all of them except the one I skipped and one our library doesn’t have). I was reading these few with the Mary Stewart novels and kind of got them mixed up although they are different genres. They both often have such exotic (to me) settings (Cyprus, Crete, Corfu).
    3. Watching Monk with my grandparents. Well, I was until Sharona was replaced. Everything changed. I would’ve been okay if no one was substituted in or a totally different side character (this woman is a caricature of Sharona’s role), but now I’m done. I want to watch the later ones (that round up the show) when she returns.
    4. Taylor Swift songs again. I don’t know how to explain how little of a music person I am. Everyone seems to have Spotify or Pandora, but to me it’s huge that I installed Spotify on my phone. And I really don’t like much music, and what I do like I really have to in the mood for. Taylor Swift seems to have a song for everything or that fits any period of life? I was trying to figure out why I liked her stuff overall while with other pop singers I only like a song or two. I think it’s because the music is important, I mean the instrumentals. It’s not just a stripped background accompaniment. And her vocals go well with the music, they fit in but don’t drown (as opposed to the songs that ARE the vocals, I don’t like those). I think the lack of this is part of why I tend to prefer instrumentals (I love the Piano Guys versions of everything), soundtracks, and more tradition/folk music (and Peter Hollen’s covers!). I just think pop is not really good, and now I think I’ve indentified (for a non-musical person), why I really don’t care for it. I prefer not to HAVE to focus on the lyrics. Her lyrics are less inane too. They are also quite . . . psychologically interesting? I can’t agree with much of the overall tendency, but yet it’s all sort of hilarious?
    5. Backing up my TBR list. I can place any orders I want directly from the library lists, so I’ve tried to clear up any other collections of books. I’ve never found the Goodreads TBR list particularly useful for me. I use it occasionally, but I’m trying to immediately add any books I read about straight to my library lists, so I’ve cleared out most of my Goodreads list (a couple times over the years). I also had a bad habit of just bookmarking blog posts and such instead of directly adding them to shelves. I cleared out that folder. I previously had a list on Amazon for interlibrary loans but transferred that a while back to an Excel workbook. I then realized that if anything happened to the library site or if I moved, I’d lose years worth of TBR collecting. So, I’ve been backing that up on a separate sheet of the Excel workbook. I will have to put items on both the library lists and the Excel one from now on, but I think it is worth it. I just need to brush up my lists (make the formatting match, clear out any duplicates, etc.). I’ve included all reference books, cookbooks, etc. on the list as well, anything I want to look at. The total of the interlibrary loan possibilities plus the regular list currently stands at 1960. I know I do have a few duplicates to clear out. Possibly also books I’ve read and haven’t removed or kept on the list to reread (not usual). Bear in mind that TBR to me means that to-possibly-read. So TPR, I guess.

    5 Things on My To-Do List

    1. Find second job or a different one entirely
    2. Finish my second associate’s degree in about a year (possibly two)
    3. Get fit
    4. Complete my Regency/Federal outfit for Jane Austen festival
    5. Complete the art project I have in mind for a (very) late Mother’s Day present. In the interim I made her a smeared (as much as I’d love to blame being a leftie, I’m sure most of the blame is my impatience and carelessness) doodled calligraphy card. I used AmandaRachLee’s doodling tutorials for lavender and for butterflies (the tutorial starts at about 4:36).
  • Daily Life

    April 2019 Goals

    I didn’t  even write out my April goals until the end of the month. Basically, I’m working to get back on track.

    Since I’m reading tons (for me) I did up my reading goals

    • 10+ books, aim for 6 nonfiction, work on War and Peace in Serial Reader (I need to set aside time to do this once per week, the sticking point is that I need my notebook for notes and to keep track of characters and plot), work on Classics Club (I need to revisit this list and be a bit more conscious about this goal).
    • Pay off CC debt and lower CC limit (apparently that is the only way to curb my spending short of going debit-card only which seems rather archaic).
    • Work on exercise and diet plans (surely I can hit on SOMETHING I am willing to keep up with).
    • Get back on track with habits, goals, spending, etc.
    • 2+ knitting projects and block the last two (probably should make sure blocking is included in finishing, but overall, doing well on the knitting category).

    I forgot to include how my March habit chart looked.

    photo of habits chart

  • Daily Life

    2nd Quarter Goals

    Overall goal: Shake It Back Up! I’m slipping back into monotony and laziness and losing my drive, memory, and optimism. I marked some items with an “!” to help myself in this area. Obviously, this is edited a bit for privacy.

    Wellness and Habits

    • Lose 15 lbs, gain muscle, tone, and flexibility
    • Return to morning, lunch, and evening routine and identify sticking points to correct
    • Weekly reset (Saturday?), life admin, and monthly planning days
    • Set digital limits, have better options, use site blockers
    • Work on daily and weekly habits and aim for no school on weekend
    • Amp up meal prep, especially breakfast
    • Go outside more (work on strawberries for one thing) !

    Finances and Career

    • Figure out side gigs plus learn skills for more specialized gigs !
    • Pay off CC and personal loan
    • Live off last month’s income
    • Fund emergency fund to certain point, start fun savings and car savings
    • Plan career and internships
    • Make min amount per month
    • Purchase textbooks and set up school plan
    • Spanish, graphic design, future plans, re-evaluate habits

    Personal Development

    • Read 25 new-to-me books including several Classics Club and 12+ nonfiction books
    • Regency prep (outfit, tickets) and vacation prep
    • 6 major sewing projects and finish some partially complete ones
    • Work on room redesign
    • Weekly adventures !
    • Mother’s Day gift !
    • Reading journal, more in depth posts, etc. !
  • Daily Life

    1st Quarter Goals Revisited

    I think that I will just focus on what I DID accomplish.

    • Made much more than I did this time last year
    • Read 40 books (!!!!), 8 of these are nonfiction and 2 re-reads
    • Worked a side gig
    • Got a temp job (one that I don’t want to quit every single day)
    • Have an A (cumulative) in my three CIT classes thus far
    • Signed up for two summer classes
    • Finished two knitting projects
    • Started workable planning and habit systems for me
    • Have generally been more optimistic
  • Daily Life

    March 2019 Goals Revisited

    I need to “course correct” (an excellent concept I picked up in The Slight Edge) for this month, so a lot of items are going to be copy and paste from February.


    • Get back on track with habits. Not exactly, I did excellent on Duolingo, though.
    • Prep meals regularly. Partially.
    • Start facial care routine. Yes.
    • Start a weekly reset habit (Sat/Sun?), get back on track with daily routines. No.
    • Double down on the health habits. Ahaha . . . no.
    • Set up tech guards, habits, and sabbaths. Worse than no.
    • Be aware of needs to be vigilante on my habits (they slip more easily in certain circumstances) No.
    • Work on room. No.


    • Have enough to pay 1st quarter’s obligation, a little in emergency fund. Partially.
    • Pay off credit card bill. Yes.
    • Finish paying loan back. Partially.
    • Make a certain minimum amount. Yes.
    • Have a now spend/lowest spend month. Ouch, NO.
    • Get a temporary job. Yes.

    Personal Development

    • Read 8-9 books, including: 4 nonfiction, 1-2 Classics Club reads, and catch up and keep up on War and Peace on Serial ReaderPartially, I read 15 fiction books.
    • 2 major knitting projects and 1-2 small ones. I finished two projects, well the knitting part of them; I still need to block both and buy and add buttons to one.
    • 2 major sewing projects. No.
    • Begin taking mini-adventures/explorations. No.
    • Determine next Spanish steps. No, I’m going to keep on what I’m doing now for the time being.
    • Determine next graphic design steps. No, I’m going to keep on what I’m doing now for the time being.
  • Daily Life

    Blog Update: All My Old Posts Are Available Now

    I couldn’t figure out or did something wrong when trying to transfer my blogger blog posts over the first time. But for some reason, I only had to try one thing this time (pretty sure it was redoing what I did before), and it worked. So all the posts that I left on my old blog are available here now. I’ve also updated my template and added tags, so I’m pretty pleased with myself. I’ve also updated some of my pages as well.

    I rejoined the Classics Club, so I will be writing more individual reviews, and I feel like I’m getting more motivation back to write more opinion posts. For awhile I was burned out and just burned on opinions (still don’t love rants and opinions-presented-as-sermons-or-facts . . . for obvious reasons). I think I’m better able to think through things and to write in a way that is perhaps less antagonizing? I want to try to utilize my book journal more (that makes it easier to write more thoughtful reviews and opinion posts) and just put more thought into things. I think I’ve been reading too passively and quickly recently.

  • Daily Life

    March 2019 Goals

    I need to “course correct” (an excellent concept I picked up in The Slight Edge) for this month, so a lot of items are going to be copy and paste from February.


    • Get back on track with habits
    • Prep meals regularly
    • Start facial care routine
    • Start a weekly reset habit (Sat/Sun?), get back on track with daily routines
    • Double down on the health habits
    • Set up tech guards, habits, and sabbaths
    • Be aware of needs to be vigilante on my habits (they slip more easily in certain circumstances)
    • Work on room


    • Have enough to pay 1st quarter’s obligation, a little in emergency fund
    • Pay off credit card bill
    • Finish paying loan back
    • Make a certain minimum amount
    • Have a now spend/lowest spend month
    • Get a temporary job

    Personal Development

    • Read 8-9 books, including: 4 nonfiction, 1-2 Classics Club reads, and catch up and keep up on War and Peace on Serial Reader
    • 2 major knitting projects and 1-2 small ones
    • 2 major sewing projects
    • Begin taking mini-adventures/explorations
    • Determine next Spanish steps
    • Determine next graphic design steps