Pardon my absence…

I’ve always said that I don’t really believe in apologizing for absences from social media, and I really don’t. So this isn’t an apology as much as it is a reason, as well as an excuse to share with you my BABIES!! Okay, not really babies but even better….PUPPIES

Today I am straying away from the bookish to share with you what has been a big part of my life since the holidays: my family’s puppy endeavor! The last three dogs we have had, my parents have talked about trying to have a litter of puppies. A golden retriever, a miniature schnauzer, and now with the second golden retriever, we’ve finally stepped up and taken the jump. Our baby has had babies!

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Of course she isn’t a baby any more, but your dog will always be your baby. Ellie has been such a champ going through this whole process. We did a lot of research going into this event and from what we read, some mamas can be very territorial of their pups, not letting their humans near in the beginning and not wanting to leave the area much. Ellie, however, is a perfect mix of taking care of the littles when she needs to and letting them get their rest and having her own (and her owner’s) self-care. She needs her own space and cool off period (the room where the puppies are has to be a consistent 82-degrees F! It gets pretty warm!).

Right now, the puppies are 3 weeks old. There are 6 adorable, purebred golden retriever pups–5 boys and 1 little girl.

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This little guy we’ve been calling ‘Rizzo’ after our favorite Chicago Cub

At 3 weeks, they are just starting to open their eyes and their hearing is just developing. They are also just starting to walk, which is honestly the funniest thing. I never really thought about dogs figuring out how to walk, but some of them use their two front legs and drag their back legs–kind of salamander-ish. A couple of them can get up on all fours for about 5 or 6 steps and then just flop down in a little puppy pile. Mostly they just sort of climb all over each other to get from point A to point B and its just adorable. And of course, I can’t forget to mention (as you can see from this picture) that right now, their tiny nails and tiny teeth are incredibly sharp!

image4Obviously, I am loving these little cherubs grow and change, and as my dad keeps saying “Its amazing, the instincts that Mother Nature has instilled in them.” And he’s not just talking about the babies, but mama pup too. She had her litter and pretty much knew what to do! Life is so messy (and smelly and gross) but so sweet and so beautiful. I hope you can all take some time to enjoy it today.

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Tag Tuesday: The Television Tag

What day is it? TAG TUESDAY!!! So this week I’m taking a break from the bookish and substituting for the tube for a week! I don’t always watch very much but I was tagged by Fictionally Sam so I have to answer the call!

tumblr_n04dqqnz261tp2pppo1_5001. Favorite show – Off the top of my head, gut reaction, first thing that comes to mind when you ask me this question, I would say that my favorite show of all time is House M.D.

2. Favorite genre – I like medical dramas, crime thrillers, comedy, historical stuffs, DIY….a pretty good variety just so long as I deem it good entertainment.

3. Least favorite show – The Curse of Oak Island (my husband watches this religiously). Also South Park and Archer.

4. Most re-watched show/favorite show to binge – House, Grey’s Anatomy, Family Guy, Friends, Criminal Minds, Mind Hunter.

f58bb36bf30f7b0dad030400d7dae36c5. Do you prefer to watch things week-to-week or binge watch? Binge, duh! I don’t mind comedy sitcoms on a week-to-week basis but dramas and thrillers are pretty much meant to be binged, amiright?

6. Favorite television characters? House, Jon Snow, Dennarys, Derek Morgan, Derek Shepard (the name Derek…I think I’m seeing a trend, eh?), Sherlock, Dr. Brennan/Bones

7. Favorite TV ships? Derek + Garcia (Criminal Minds), McDreamy + Meredith (Grey’s Anatomy), Killian + Emma Swan (Once Upon a Time), Elaina + Damon (The Vampire Diaries)

09eee546e6ce8128fbf829e6933dcc428. Shows you could never get into – CSI, The Office, Firefly, True Blood

9. Shows you fell out of love with – Once Upon a Time, Supernatural (I still love Sam and Dean SO MUCH but the show/storyline just is not what it used to be)

10. Cancelled too soon – Galavant, Smash, Forever

11. Guilty pleasure show – The Vampire Diaries. Riverdale? Maybe Pawn Stars or American Pickers. Ghost Hunters? More of the reality dramas.

12. What are you currently watching? Playing catchup on Outlander, Supernatural and The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina

13. (I’m adding this Q in because I can’t believe it isn’t here!) Other shows you love or have swooned, laughed, or cried over in the past? The Haunting of Hill House, Hemlock Grove, Gilmore Girls, Are You Afraid of the Dark?,  Boy Meets World, Bones, The X-Files, Game of Thrones, Supernatural

And that’s it my friends. These are my faves and my least faves….at least as they come to me off the top of my head. I’m sure I’m missing some, but its the best I can do. If you’re interested, give it a go yourself. Be sure to tag me so I can see your answers too!

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January 2019 Readathons

Hey everyone! Today I will be sharing a few of the Read-a-thons for this month that I am aware of and that I will be participating in. If you have been following me on social media at all, whether via blog, Twitter, or IG, you will know that I am a RAT addict. I love jumping in on read-a-thons of all kinds for several reasons.

b72f83555612cab4f01bf10b505d7a81First of all, there are so many different types so depending on the ‘thon, it may get you reading a genre that you don’t read very much. For example, I am going to try the Mangathon later this month and I have NEVER read ANY manga before in my life. However, a couple of my dear IG friends have made stories with manga recommendations and I am going to try some out and see what happens! Who knows, maybe I’ll love it! Maybe not, but from what I hear, they can be relatively quick reads and I can get some books read and onto my GR challenge! Woo! A second reason that I love read-a-thons is that motivation to set aside some time to read. For RAT’s with time requirements (Dewey’s 24 hour read-a-thon, the 24in48, etc.), I love them and really try to reserve that time in my calendar if I can. These events only happen twice a year so it’s not like these other RAT’s that are weeklong or a different theme that I find every weekend, but when I do participate in the up-all-night challenges, I get SO MUCH READING DONE and it feels like such a triumph. The final reason that I will state for my addiction to read-a-thons is the community. Yes, there is community to be found all the time for book chatting, but when you’re doing a ‘thon, you’re all working on the same goals, you’re talking about similar books and goals, and then you’re looking toward the next time you get together and do this all over again. I just love the updates and the encouragement (and the prizes…what? noooooo) and the general buzz of excitement down to what you’re snacking on and listening to.

The LATE-A-THON ~ January 1-31

“OFF THE GRID” READ-A-THON” ~ January 11-13

MANGATHON ~ January 21-27

24IN48 READ-A-THON ~ January 26-27

WINTER BIANNUAL BIBLIOTHON ~ January 12-18

So there is a good list for January to get you started. Are there any here that you are participating in? Did I miss any that need to be included? Let me know in the comments!

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Blogmas 18: Tag Tuesday – The Christmas Carol Book Tag

Its the last Tuesday before Christmas!!! Well, not including Christmas itself, of course. Time is flying (which, I feel like I say in every single post…but its so true!!). I am looking forward to working through this tag, and I hope you will too!

YOU’RE A MEAN ONE, MR. GRINCH
Name a villainous character you can’t help but love to hate.

The-Grinch-how-the-grinch-stole-christmas-33148450-1024-768-800x300

The Darkling from Leigh Bardugo’s Grishaverse. He is vile and ruthless, but he is so in love with Alina and would do anything for her. How can you not love that?

ALL I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS IS YOU
What book do you most want to find under your Christmas tree this year?

Colleen Hoover’s latest (which I only learned about recently): Verity. Unlike all of CoHo’s other books, this one is a thriller/suspense novel and everyone who I have seen read it have come away saying something along the lines of “WTF?!” So basically, I MUST READ THIS!

rudolphRUDOLPH THE RED-NOSED REINDEER
Name a favourite character that had to overcome a major obstacle.

Katniss Everdeen is forever one of my favorite characters and I think, by now, pretty much everyone knows her story. The obstacles that girl had to face and the pressure on her shoulders was just enormous. From being sent into the games not once but TWICE, to everything that happened to Peeta, to losing her sister, to then being manipulated into being the Mockingjay and leading an assault into the Capital…yeah, she’s pretty much my hero.

SANTA CLAUS IS COMING TO TOWN
Which characters do you think are at the top of Santa’s “Naughty” and “Nice” list?

At the top of Santa’s “Naughty” list is the Ministor/Pastor in Christina Dalcher’s Vox. This dude was awful. He truly believed what he preached about women’s true place being at the head of the household, and that they should be seen and not heard. Vox is a dystopian sci-fi book but honestly, I would almost categorize it as horror because the concepts and just how realistically it was written is just terrifying. On a lighter note, at the top of Santa’s “Nice” list is Jamie Fraser. This man is a saint. I mean, he gives all of himself not just for his wife but for his entire family, for his country, and for the bum on the street, no matter his or her nationality. Definitely at the top of the “Nice” list. We all need to be more like Jamie.

frostyFROSTY THE SNOWMAN
What book just melts your heart?

I’m going to say A Christmas Carol for this one. I think the book is absolutely great. Not only that, but it is tied in my head to the movie versions which are so sentimental and hold such good memories.

FELIZ NAVIDAD
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our favourite book that takes place in a country other than your own.

Uhh, Harry Potter….duh!! 😛

IT’S THE MOST WONDERFUL TIME OF THE YEAR
What book do you read to get in the Christmas spirit?

I read different books every year, and I sort of have a rotation going. So other than A Christmas Carol, which I already mentioned, I also have Skipping Christmas in my rotation which I really enjoy. That’s the John Grisham book that the movie “Christmas with the Cranks” is based off of. Its really good, if you haven’t read it before!

SLEIGH RIDE
What character would you most want to spend the holidays with?

Christian Gray, baby! *wink*wink*

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BABY IT’S COLD OUTSIDE
What book do you hate so much you would sacrifice it to the fire to stay warm?

Twilight. When I first read the series several years ago, I didn’t think they were too bad. Of course, I was several years younger and I read them post-surgery. Both of those factors must have had much to do with my thinking because when I *tried* to re-read them last year….yeah, I’m ready to throw them into the fire.

DO YOU HEAR WHAT I HEAR?
What book would you recommend to everyone?

The Light We Lost. This book warmed my heart and then broke my heart. So good.

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If you’re in the mood for a Christmas tag, I hereby tag you to do ^this^ one! Its not too long, not too short! Just right! And now I have these stuck in my head. 😉

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Blogmas Day 11: Tag Tuesday! Bookish ‘Naughty or Nice’ Tag

naughty-or-nice-temporary-tattoo-tt0138We survived another Monday, y’all! And how do we celebrate? With a tag for Tag Tuesday! I was “tagged” by Destiny @ Howling Libraries, and I have to give credit to Jenn for creating the tag. Here we go:

  • Received an ARC and not reviewed it – Naughty! I did this once and it hit my Netgalley score so hard I’m never doing it again. Next year, my answer will be “nice”! 
  • Have less than 60% feedback rating on Netgalley – Nice! I am currently sitting at 81%. Its one of my New Years resolutions to get that number up. I WILL hit at least 90%, gosh darn it!!
  • Rated a book on goodreads and promised a full review was to come on your blog (and never did) – Naughty. I rarely ‘promise’ a full review to come. I think maybe once or twice I have. I really only rate or rate and review. Its all or nothing. I am trying to get better at this too.
  • dog-eared-book-e1358973316431Folded down the page of a book – Nice. I really don’t mind this too much, but I have so many nice bookmarks now I have no reason to fold. I used to though. Not anymore!
  • Accidentially spilled on a book – Nice. I am SO careful of my books. I do NOT spill.
  • DNF a book this year – Naughty. I also don’t think that this is a bad thing necessarily. I just have come to realize that it takes a lot of time to read a book, so why waste it on a book you aren’t enjoying?
  • Bought a book purely because it was pretty with no intention of reading it – Nice. I will admit that I cover buy relatively frequently. However, I always intend to read it. And I am ok at walking away from a beautiful cover if I’m not going to read it.
  • Read whilst you were meant to be doing something else (like homework) – Naughty. I do this all the time. But also, I have learned the skill of multi-tasking….working and listening to an audiobook!
  • Skim read a book – Naughty. Once you get past the point of DNF and then a book takes a turn for the worst and you just know you’re in for a LONG RIDE…yeah. Been there.
  • fol-book-sale-general-pic_img_0267Completely missed your Goodreads goal – Nice. I will PROBABLY miss my goal of 75. I’m not giving up yet though. I am currently at 62 books.
  • Borrowed a book and not returned it – Nice. I am not really a borrower unless its the library, and I bring those back!
  • Broke a book buying ban – Nice. A book ban is a book ban. I have SO. MANY. BOOKS. just sitting on my shelves that I need to read! (and so little money in my wallet)
  • Started a review, left it for ages then forgot what the book was about – Naughty. This I so fairly often. I very rarely write a review right after finishing a book. I Just need to let it sink in. But then sometimes I sort of forget to go back and finish a review….whoops.
  • Wrote in a book you were reading – Nice. I really don’t write in books unless its for school, and I’m not in school any more. At this point, if a note needs to be made, I make it on a Post-it or in my phone and come back to it later.
  • c1z93cykfzklFinished a book and not added it to your Goodreads – Nice. No way! If I read a book, I want “credit” for it! Those are going straight to GR!!
  • Borrowed a book and not returned it to a friend – Nice. I have already mostly answered this one. I really don’t borrow books, but I will add that at the same time, I don’t really lend books either….for good reason!
  • Dodged someone asking if they can borrow a book – Naughty. Sorry but….I just don’t trust people!
  • Broke the spine of someone else’s book – Nice. I definitely don’t do this. Maybe I would ask first, but I never initiated it.
  • Took the jacket off a book to protect it and ended up making it more damaged – Naughty – I literally just did this today! It really wasn’t too bad but I am so good at squishing and wrinkling them!
  • Sat on a book accidentially – Naughty. Uhhh, yes. Do you know how many books you have to pull out at a time to have booksta pics? A lot. They litter your furniture and floor. I’ve definitely sat on them.

So that’s all folks! My score: 7 Naughty/13 Nice. Woo hoo!! I’m a nice bookworm!! Where do you rate?

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Tag Tuesday: Harry Potter Book Tag

HAPPY BIRTHDAY HARRY!! Did you know that today, July 31st, is Harry Potter’s birthday? Yep! Its almost sad that I know that, but I do. Our little hero was born on this day in 1980. So in honor of that, of course I must do a tag in his honor!

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Favourite book – Growing up my favorite book was Prisoner of Azkaban. I still really like that book but now that I’m older I think Deathly Hallows is my favorite. I think it has more depth to it, which I appreciate more.

Favourite movie – Half Blood Prince for sure! Although I enjoy watching Goblet of Fire much more than I used to.

Least favourite book – Chamber of Secrets I think. Probably my least favorite movie as well. Which is a shame because I love Kenneth Branagh!!

37da4a94ad2dfe0a275634a5ed212b8eParts of the books/movies that made you cry – Oh come on! Dobby. The raising of the wands for Dumbledore. Those are the biggest moments.

If you could hook up with any Harry Potter character who would it be? Either of the Weasely twins. 😉

Favourite character – Prof. McGonagall, Molly Weasley, Sirius, Dumbledore

What would your Patronus be? A dog.

Which of the Deathly Hallows would you choose? Wand.

What House would you be in? Ravenclaw.

If you could meet any member of the cast who would it be? Alan Rickman.

lhp1_featuredHave you played any of the video games? Lego Harry Potter for the WIN!!

If you were on the Quiddich team which position would you play? Spectator.

Were you happy with the ending? Yes, minus the “Fifteen years later” part. I hate when authors do that. I just don’t need that in a book….

How much does Harry Potter mean to you? I have many memories associated with the books, the movies, merchandise, and hopefully someday the theme parks. I plan on making more with future children and other family members. I don’t see HP fading from my life anytime soon. ❤

So if you’re reading this and you’re a fan of HP and want to wish him a happy birthday too, or just want to have a bit of fun with this tag, then consider yourself tagged! 😉

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#24in48 = One of my FAVORITE read-a-thons is HERE!!

If you follow my blog, you know that I LOVE read-a-thons!! Long, short, genre-themed or general, I just adore them! Just in case you are new to the blogging or bookish world, a read-a-thon (or you might see it abbreviated as RAT) is when we bookworms ‘get together’ for a certain pre-determined period of time and read as much as we can in said time. Some RAT’s have a group or buddy read, some have a theme (Halloweenathon [fall books], Alphabethon [each round they read a different letter of the alphabet]), some do prizes, some are a quick 24 hours and some last a full week or more. I love being part of a community that has a common goal that I love (books!) and then dedicating time to do pretty much nothing but read.

So, what am I reading for this weekend’s 24 in 48? Well, I have several books up on deck. First up, I have two that I am planning on finishing up and those would be The Wicked Deep and Children of Blood and Bone. I am really enjoying both of these so as much as I don’t want these books to end, I am looking forward to knocking these both out!

After that I will be picking up two new books and these will be one new audiobook and one new ebook for a book tour. So these will be Then She Was Gone and Heart of Thorns. Ever since I finished The Last Time I Lied, I’ve been craving more good thrillers so I went right into The Wicked Deep which is spooky and now Then She Was Gone which I heard is a good mystery/thriller and I love the cover! So I’m pretty excited about that one!!

Also, I went to the library today and picked up way more new release YA fantasies than I can chew as well so….who knows what trouble I can get myself into this weekend. Hopefully lots! Let me know if you are participating in this or any other challenges or read-a-thons this weekend….or just what you’re reading! I always love to know! Happy reading!!

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Tag Tuesday: The Mid-Year Book Freak Out Tag!

Hi everyone! June is officially over so we are MORE than halfway through the year. Yikes! I figured this week, I’ll take a look at what I’ve read so far this year and put the good, the bad, and the ugly into a tag. I’ve read 34 books so far this year and Goodreads tells me I’m “one book behind” on my goal of 75 books. Without further ado, here goes!:

1. Best book you’ve read so far in 2018.

a_semi-definitive_list_of_worst_nightmares_krystal_sutherland_fall_2017_ya_booksSo far this year I have marked 7 out of 35 books as 5 stars but the one that I am choosing as “the best” is A Semi-Definitive List of Worst Nightmares. Why? It was the biggest surprise and I think that its the most impactful and the most creative. This book had humor and heart and depth! I mentioned when I reviewed it a few months ago that I dislike the cover and I still feel that it in no way does the book justice. If you like contemporaries and/or magical realism and don’t shy away from trigger warnings of suicide or depression, then absolutely read this book. SO. WORTH. IT.

2. Best sequel you’ve read so far in 2018.

Short Stories From Hogwarts of Power, Politics, and Pesky Poltergeists. I only have a short list to choose from and I wasn’t in love with the Grisha sequels so when all else fails, default to the PotterVerse! This was actually my favorite of the short library collections. I found this one witty and interesting, moreso than either of the other two books.

344992213. New release you haven’t read yet, but want to.

To Kill a Kingdom is getting so much buzz and I have had this book for months now! Why have I still not read it?! I always tell myself I want to be ready for the Goodreads awards and I’m going to binge read when the nominees come out but there are just way too many. I have to start NOW and I just know that this will be on there.

4. Most anticipated release for the second half of the year.

The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein. I am desparate for this release!! I have heard its good and its right up my alley. I cannot wait for this release!!

5. Biggest disappointment.

A Wrinkle in Time: Graphic Novel. Maybe its been too long since I read the book, or maybe the graphic novel was just too cheesy for me. Whatever the matter, I had been looking forward to reading this and ended up very disappointed. I don’t have a ton of experience with graphic novels, but I have enjoyed those I have read….with the exception of this one.

289456656. Biggest surprise.

Zero Repeat Forever. I’m choosing this not just because I am surprised that I enjoyed a sci-fi book (its not my typical go-to genre), but I was surprised by the ending. Hello cliffhanger!! I was so drawn into the characters of this book and I can’t wait for the second book to release!!

7. Favourite new author. (Debut or new to you)

Ashley Poston – Geekerella. I received an ARC of Geekerella before the paperback was released and I absolutely LOVED the book. Honestly I was a little skeptical but it all ended up great! Now I’m considering buying my own hard copy because I loved it so much! Ashley Poston is definitely an author I will read again.

8. Newest fictional crush.

Levi from Fangirl. Pretty much enough said. The guy can make me a latte anytime! 😉

9. Newest favourite character.

The Darkling! Seriously…all the merch, all the books, all the angsty talk….#teamDarkling

2511100410. Book that made you cry.

November 9. I have fallen in love with Colleen Hoover this year and November 9 is probably my favorite CoHo book at this point. I can’t wait for her next book to release! All Your Perfects is the title and it releases on July 17th. Almost here!

11. Book that made you happy.

Catching Fire. Book #2 of The Hunger Games is my favorite and I have been craving a re-read for a while. I was so happy to finally pick it up and I absolutely loved my time listening to the audiobook for the first time.

12. Favourite book to film adaptation you saw this year.

Annihilation – way better than the book. The movie is SO trippy! It was everything I expected but didn’t get from the book!

3364552713. Favourite review you’ve written this year. (Booktube version: Favourite video you have done so far in this year)

The Strange Case of the Alchemist’s Daughter. I feel like I got to reference some fun works, use some great quotes, and find some fun pictures to put into my review. Plus I enjoyed the book itself so that made writing the review all the better.

14. Most beautiful book you’ve bought so far this year (or received)

Sky in the Deep. I thought this book was beautiful both inside and out. I like that it was unique and strong.

15. What books do you need to read by the end of the year?

I want to read Six of Crows/Crooked Kingdom, The Darkest Minds, and I want to pick up the Red Queen series again, now that its finished (I hate cliffhangers with unreleased books).

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So there you have it, folks! If you are reading this and you have not yet done this tag, consider yourself officially tagged and go do it! Its a good one! Oh, and just a reminder, my giveaway is still open for The Last Time I Lied. If you live in the U.S. or Canada and want to read this amazing summer thriller by Riley Sager, visit my last post and give me your best shot and two truths and a lie and I’ll enter you to win a free copy of the book. Giveaway goes until 7/19/18. Goodluck!

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