Look what happened now...
It seems ludicrous to think I went on a "book buying fast" for most of the summer, doesn't it? I stayed away from Amazon (for books anyway) and did my best to avoid books stores, not that those really exist anymore. So just recently I've started shopping again. (You can read about the fall mini book haul here.) I held back, so it's a short post, lol.
Part of my recent promise to myself has been to stop working so much and find time to do things I love. I have put so much on the back burner lately because of work, but now that I am taking time to read, make art and travel again I feel so much better! #WIN
So far I've read two books from that mini haul.
The first book I read was this delightful book on Frida and Diego by Catherine Reef. This is a lovely book filled with the artists stories, photographs, history and art.
Frida and Diego by Catherine Reef
The second book I read this week was Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett.
This has been on my list to purchase for sometime, but I never seemed to remember it at Amazon. The used bookstore had a well read copy for $1 so I couldn't pass it up. Next I will probably buy in hardback.
Now I'm off for a mini road trip~ Have coffee, can travel!
The blog challenge continues. Read past posts here, if you need to catch up.
Today I am sharing 8 things I am currently loving. These are not linked or sponsored. Just my personal finds that I use everyday and love.
If you visit here often or follow me on Twitter you know I love tea! And I love trying new organic, eco-sourced products.
This month I'm drinking Root Chakra Tea. Buddha Teas are not the cheapest teas, nor the most expensive, but they are some of the best. I want to say I paid about $6.50 for a box?
I love this small travel toothbrush from FFF. I picked it up as an add-on and love it! Its compact and super soft. It came with three, instead of two brush heads. I honestly have no idea what I paid, but I know it wasn't over $20-$25?
I am also loving the Essential Oxygen organic toothpaste and brushing rinse. I have been using the brushing rinse for over a year, but had a lot of Earthpaste stocked piled. #TrueStory - When I find a product I like I purchase a supply of it. #NOTaHoarder I promise.
Once I used it all, I bought the EO toothpaste to try. Now I really love it too.
The Toothpaste is only $8.09 on Amazon and the brushing rinse is $10.27.
I'm also so loving this Acure scrub and Nelson Hair Mask. I use both while soaking (and reading) in the tub, for a wonderful and relaxing afternoon. The hair mask really helps tame my thick locks and makes my hair super silky.
I love all of the Acure products! I finished off my last tube of facial scrub and decided to try this one with Sea Kelp. I'm so glad I did!
Also on my list:
Pacifica Dreamy Youth Day and Night Face Cream, which I also bought on Amazon for around $15USD. I not sure, but I think that was the subscription price? After using it a week I knew I wanted to try it our for several months, so I quickly added it to my monthly subscriptions. It is amazing and so light weight. In this crazy summer heat you don't want a heavy cream on your face, making you sweat even more. I have been using it for about three months now and am very pleased.
It's not greasy at all and is easily absorbed into the skin. + Like all Pacifica products it is cruelty-free and vegan. #WIN
My last item is a couple of pens I received in a Sketchbox monthly subscription box. I am drawing more and am so pleased to try out new, professional grade products.
So how many is that?
Join me tomorrow for the next challenge post.
Hope your summer is going well. August is my birthday month and like all good leo's I begin celebrating in July and go into September, lol! (That would be a funny story, but it is actually true, lol)
One of the treats I bought for myself to celebrate was a SketchBox. (Because I clearly do not have enough monthly boxes, hahahahhah!) Oh and by the way, I really did purchase it, this isn't sponsored.
The first box arrived August 1st and sadly I have not had much time to draw, but I am excited to use the supplies when things slow down. Let's look inside the box:
I opted for the Premium Box. It is $35usd a month plus shipping. You never know what you are going to get, but looking at past boxes they included such favs as Copic Markers, Koi Watercolors, Charcoals, and other mediums I was excited to try!
They theme the boxes so you can try a new medium with all the tools you will need to finish a project. They have also just recently started including a "How To" video on the website to help you learn to the use the products, which I love as well.
Inside the box:
While I love all the pencils, as you can see it wasn't much of a savings over retail. But of course the Lightfast oil based pencil set isn't on the market yet and it does seem to be incredible. I can't wait to play with them all!
I liked the box and will enjoy using the pencils. They will complement my already large collection and I feel it was a fair price, maybe not a HUGE savings, but the items were very good quality.
I'm going to give it three months to see what supplies are included before deciding to cancel or purchase a yearly subscription.
What do you think?
Do you subscribe to this box?
Do you think it's worth the money?
I hope to take some time off this week and use them all.
Catch you later!
How are things? I'm catching up on my book reviews today, both here and at Goodreads.
According to the site I've only had time to review nine books this year. Of those some were really amazing...while a few let me down. (See below for one that really sucked ass.)
Two of the books I recently read were written by Kim Newman and one is a "collection". One of the Newman books is part of the Anno Dracula series, (which I love! ) You can find my review of book two of the series here and book one here.
While reading the first book I knew I wanted to read the entire series, so I've been collecting them.
This book is number three in the Anno Dracula series.
Judgment of Tears by Kim Newman
This book was also released as Dracula Cha Cha Cha in the UK. I started reading this series and was immediately hooked. I really enjoy the authors witty style of including historical and fictional era characters in the story along with a good mystery and lots of twisty plot turns. It's not your typical Dracula saga at all and if you are a Twilight fan - you will hate this.
Angels of Music by Kim Newman
I read this book because I'm touring Mr. Newman's catalogue, lol. This isn't part of the Anno Dracula series, but familiar characters do pop up. The book is a collection of stories set around the Phantom of the Opera and the women (Angels) he employees as spies, assassins and general heroes. Most of the cases are of course, paranormal or have a paranormal twist.
UGH! File this one under NO, Just NO!
This book wasn't what I thought it was, I thought it would be actual stories of camping, hiking, outdoor adventures with the paranormal or at least “urban legends” type stories. It was more like a middle school collection of short, classic (read old), ghost stories, mostly taking place in the UK. So if you are not familiar with the horror of overgrown hedges or abandoned manor houses it won’t really scare you. Some of the stores were well written, but not any more frightening than normal ghost stories you would tell around the camp fire. I’m donating the book to a school library.
But fortunately look what just came in the post today!
I haven't been reviewing any boxes lately because I actually figured you were tired of seeing the same old thing....but I did get a Spring Fab Fit Fun box in and some really awesome Vegan snacks though and thought I would share.
Are you like me and love mystery subscription boxes? It's really nice getting something other than junk mail or bills in the post, lol. So here is what I received in March:
There were a few items I didn't really care about and a few that were not vegan so I donated, but for only $49.99 I still feel like I got my money's worth. I will probably go ahead now and purchase a yearly subscription. You save $20 by doing this and get first pick on "add ons". If you want to try and a box (and save some money too!) use this link: SAVE You get $10 off your 1st box!
(This is my 3rd box!) It works out to right around $200USD worth of stuff...and almost ALL of it is full size, so you get to actually try the products out.
The Vegan Cuts box is $22.95 (including shipping) - it goes down in price if you buy a 6 month or year sub. There are always at least 10 and sometimes 15 products inside. I didn't take many pictures, because at the time I wasn't planning on posting a review. UH OH....but yeah you get the idea right? I have been getting this box for over 2 years and it only gets better each month. #WIN
And not from a box (but notice my new candle, lol) I have been eyeing these marble trays for some time. I finaily broke down and bought one. I love it and have no idea why I waited so long!
So what boxes do you get? Are there any good ones I should check out? Leave me a comment - I'm always looking to try new products and find cool, vegan or off beat stuff.
Once again save $10 off your first FFF box here and enjoy your weekend!
See you at the airport~
I hope all is well in your world? Life is great here. Work is good, weather is pleasant and I've a trove of new books, lol So it's time to ask that question, "What have you been reading?" Do you have any new recommendations or books to share? Cause I could always use another for the TBR shelf.
Currently I've changed my work schedule I have more time to read. #win!
So I've a few books to review.
This book is number two in the Anno Dracula series. I read book one here if you want to read my review.
The Bloody Baron by Kim Newman
I read book one and was hooked on the series and the authors witty style of including historical and fictional era characters in the story along with a good mystery. It's not your typical Dracula saga at all and if you are a Twilight fan - you will hate this.
Tokyo on Foot by Florent Chavouet
Another book I found via Goodreads. One of the people I follow had pick it up on a whim and reviewed it. I instantly fell in love with the sketch art. The artist/author is Florent Chavouet a French author who spent six months staying in Tokyo. His humor and insights make for a fun read, but the art and the energy he captures make this a treasured travllers book.
Part two coming soon!
See you at the airport~
How can March almost be over?
This month has flown by!
So how has your month been? March has been wonderful for me. Work is going great, lots of good things are in the works (more about them soon!) And I even found time to read a bit. #WIN
More book and product reviews soon.
Plus more travel tales and more all around randomness!
Catch you Later~
It's almost SPRING!
The official date for Spring, in the Northern Hemisphere is March 20, 2018, and I can't wait. I enjoy winter, but I'm looking forward to spring this year. I love flowers and of course all the fresh vegetables. I plan on planting another garden and expand my kitchen herb collection.
So I have already started looking for pots, seeds and any/all tools to get a jump on the growing season. I found this 3 Tier Stackable Garden - for indoor/outdoor use. I like the fact that it is self watering and I can expand the number of fresh herbs I can grow NOW and I don't have to wait for warmer weather. It's not too big so you can use it in the kitchen or on the patio. Best part it's under $25USD on Amazon!
Also by growing in my kitchen I have the fresh herbs handy when I need them, plus I keep bugs and critters out of the pots.
It should also help keep the locals out of my pots. Don't get me wrong, I don't mind a toad in the yard on or the patio, but not so much in the oregano.
I also really like this Earth Box kit. (It has wheels! How smart is that?) Plus it comes with everything you need- I know I hate driving into town for fertilizer or planting mix. Each trip I find more things I "need" and end up spending $50 when I went in for a $5 item. This kit is a little bit more pricey at $57 but I figure it paid for itself by eliminating all those extra trips into town. You can grow vegetables, herbs and flowers on windowsills, on your deck or even the balcony, or take it inside - with our unpredictable weather I like that I can easily bring the box inside quickly. Plus container gardening means no weeding!
And if you are just starting out gardening and are unsure about which supplies or tools you need this kit has got it all including non gmo seeds. It comes complete with:
I'm ordering one for each of my nieces and nephews so they can start gardening, too. Have you started planting yet? Nothing beats a early Spring garden full of fresh, homegrown vegetables. MMMMM I'm already looking forward to being over run with squash and strawberries!
I will update you on the garden process over the next few weeks and also don't forget I'm planning that BIG Pacific trip - so any advice on where to go/stay/see/avoid would be appreciated.
This is my 8th blog post of 2018. Last year I blogged 127 times, that makes 10.58 blog posts per month, almost 2 blog posts per week. HEY THAT’S NOT BAD. Considering that it is a luxury to actually have time to sleep.
I even made the effort to update the look of the website and added video headers, plus some new pages. I have also opted to add a few affiliate links. I’m actually not sure if I want to continue them, we shall see. I also tried to refrain from bitching about work and being constantly exhausted all the time.
My 2018 new year resolution is blog at least 3 posts per week. I have never really cared if anybody reads this silly little blog, it has been more about documenting some of the places I’ve been and the insights I’ve had. So I am always surprised that people do follow. I want to say a BIG THANK YOU! 🙂 for your continued support.
Okay back to reviewing 2017...
This is somewhat surprising.
We are still here, on the outskirts of Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA. I post mostly landscapes and of course food picture from here or random selfies, lol.
Honestly I am so in love with the mountains and the blue sky here and of course the house. We have a nice garden and mostly this feels like heaven. So I try to keep the house tidy and minimal even though it's big 2 story with 4 bedrooms, 3 baths and a huge bonus room I use for an office, but I don't actually talk much about the house. The kitchen is nice, much better than what we had in the UK, but not as well thought out as the kitchen in France. But it works for us, as you may have noticed I am sharing more food picts and recipes.
More Vegan Food
I have posted more and more vegan recipes and cooking stuff in general this past year. Mostly because I have been home more and have the ability to cook more. I still want to remind you I am NOT a food blogger.
I think I have taken more selfies in 2017 than all the past years combined. Remember when you wondered what I looked like? Yeah, those days are long gone.
But back to my hair, it is still blonde - And yes, I’m bored with it. I considered cutting it off this year, but I think I will wait another year. It grows pretty fast though and if I do not flat iron it you
can see it is really thick. Using the flat iron may make the style look better - but I hate how thin and flat it looks. :(
Travel in 2017
Travel this past year was sparse. Well, compared to other years when I'm running back and forth to NOLA, Florida or France. But I did mange a few adventures...
Janurary here in central New Mexico started out snowing...
I am still impressed with snow.
It was fun for a few days and then it was over. #Goodtimes
Jan - left the odd snow storm and headed to New York City. It was dark, cold and snowing there too. But New York is always amazing no matter what the weather is like.
This trip was part busines/part fun.
In February we left the dark and flew to Iceland.
This was a destination that's been on my son's bucket list for years, but I was not that excited. But guess what? I LOVED IT!
And totally not what I expected. It did snow while we were there, but we still managed a night trip to see the Northern Lights. We stayed 7 days and it was not long enough. I'm sure we will return soon.
March was a short Vegas get away and April was me at home planting a garden and experimenting in the kitchen.
May I had company and showed them around the area here. You can read about it here. I also started a mini food diary to share what I eat (people still ask) and what I typically purchase at the market.
August I began "What Are You Reading?" A quick review of my recent reads and such. Work was still very busy, but I made my mind up I was going to make time to read and relax more.
September another review and of course the hurricane hitting my home in Texas. I actually didn't talk much about it. Maybe this year I will be able to share more, it's just completely overwhelming. STILL.
October was Halloween and I was supposed to go to NOLA for a right old party, but I came down with a bug and spent it in bed. #FML (But look out this year!)
November I blogged about American Myths and more book reviews. We debated on going somewhere exotic for Christmas, but decided against it. After spending the holidays in Europe and other amazing places it was nice to just stay in and chill for a change. We did explore around the area, here some. Check out this short video if you want to see an ancient Native American site we hiked.
I also posted more about my not so secret love of flowers and house plants this past year.
So I posted more about gardens and houseplants than ever before. It's not quite an obsession, but almost.
So all in all it was a great year. We didn't travel as much as usual, but that's okay too. I'm so thankful we are able to live in a nice place, with lots of natural beauty and good people.
I'm also thankful for you, taking the time to read my silly little blog. I appreciate it and the encouraging emails I get from ya'll. Thank you for your friendship and support!
Do you have big plans for this year? I can't wait to see what adventures 2018 will bring!
See you at the airport-
I went through a pile of books inJanuary...too cold to do much outside and all, lol
Here are the ones I have managed to rate so far - I have also included the "3 Word Rating" system...if you don't have time to read my full review.
Generally if I don't like a book I stop reading it and do not review it...as I figure it is a waste of my time. So usually any book I take the time to review I at least mildly like or can find some virtue in.
As you can see by my past reading posts here and here - I have eclectic taste in reading material. If you click the image of the books you will go directly to Amazon and can grab them at a good price, used or otherwise. This is an affiliate link.
I have four more books I still need to write a review on so hopefully there will be a part three before March, lol. Of all the books I've read lately I really enjoyed Anno-Dracula. It could be because I just came off a week long binge of watching Black Butler and was already in a dark and depraved Victorian mindset, IDK. But it really is a witty, well written book, complete with Mrs, Stoker, Professor Moriarty, Inspector Lestrade and other notable characters.
3 Word Reivew:
"I LOVED IT"
Two pages in and I'm looking for more in the series!
This was witty, well written and an all around brilliant read. I loved all the classic characters and events woven in an alternative Victorian London ruled by Dracula. I played "spot the vampire" and other famous people in this gritty alternative reality. I found quite a few and was surprised at the ones I missed- check Wiki to see if you can recognize all of the classics woven into the plot.
Warning: if you are a lover of the "Twilight Saga" this isn't for you. This is gritty, ugly, vampires and other beings behaving badly, chewing up Victorian London in a deep fog and not a single one is sparkly.
Looking forward to reading the next in this series.
When I'm not reading about vampires in Victorain London I like to read about Ancient Ruins in the Southwest, lol
Ancient Ruins of the Southwest
3 Word Rating:
I Need THIS
This is a welcome guide for every traveler when they are exploring the southwest, so glad I found it.
In this book there is a clear descriptions of each site, time-saving tips for the traveler, nearby towns and other helpful information. Filled with photos of ruins, petroglyphs, artifacts, and maps, this easy to follow book will enhance your trip to the areas listed. Use this book to plan your visit and make the most of each trip. #Win
Overall great guide to archaeological ruins of the American Southwest. Can't wait to start exploring some of the sites listed in this book!
I also happened on a good book on modern astrology...
True as the Stars Above
3 Word Rating:
Well Written Book
Well, actually I had to search this book down, as I understand it is out of print now. It was the worth the effort! I enjoyed the writing style and loved the book is full of information. It's a witty and a well researched look at astrology in modern times. The author shares information and answers questions about astrology you might have. Believe in it or not, you will learn more about this art and the also some of the famous people who swear by it.
Glad to have this book in my collection.
What are you currently reading?
Catch you later!
Welcome to my travel blog, my healthy Vegan lifestyle blog and my life! It's a lot, but it's my passions and I just love to write about it. Here I share tips, stories and photos from my adventures and life. This is the place where people can find daily inspiration to travel and motivation to live healthier lives and laugh a bit too!
Most Popular Blog