10 Things I’m Thankful For

Hi peeps! So today is Thanksgiving here in the United States, so I wanted to talk about some of the things that I’m thankful for this year. It’s been a year of ups and downs, but I still have plenty to be grateful for.

  1. My husband. He’s always with me through thick and thin, and he’s my biggest supporter. I don’t know what I’d do without him.
  2. My best friend. She’s always got my back and is always willing to have girl time – even with her new baby!
  3. The opportunity to teach overseas. I’ve been working with a recruiter for the past few months to be able to teach English as a second language in South Korea. I don’t have a job lined up yet, but I have all of my documents ready and I’ve been applying to various positions through the recruiter, so I’m hoping that early next year I’ll be able to take this opportunity.
  4. Having experience teaching. I took a class that started in December of last year and completed in April of this year to get my certification to teach English as a second language, and it was a very interesting course. Part of it was needing to get field experience teaching, which I was able to do at a local college in my state with a really great teacher and students. This helped to give me just a glimpse into what the teaching world is like and what I can expect when I do it.
  5. Kpop. Okay, this might sound like a silly one, but I’ve been into kpop since about 2015 when I discovered groups like Big Bang, SNSD, BTS, EXO, Monsta X, etc. This year, however, my love for kpop has grown and is pretty much all I listen to in my spare time (or lo-fi music). There’s been so many people I’ve grown close to as friends because of it, and there’s also been a lot of songs and groups that have just stuck out and my love for them has grown exponentially. I never knew how much I could love a group or their music, and yet, here I am.
  6. Kacchako. If you don’t know what My Hero Academia is, it’s a manga series by Kohei Horikoshi that was also turned into an anime and it’s just SO GOOD. And like anything there are ships that can happen within the series and within the fandom. One of the fandom (unofficial) ones is Kacchako (Bakugou Katsuki x Uraraka Ochako). I don’t really know how it happened, but one day I was just like, “I love them,” and discovered fan fiction that then lead me to tumblr and found the tag for it that then lead me to a discord server where I’ve made a bunch of friends and where I found a lot of happiness the last few months. It actually leads me into my next point:
  7. Writing fan fiction. I have written SO MUCH this year, it’s incredible, and most of it has been fan fiction. I’ve written a bunch of one shots on Kacchako, as well as other ships from the series, and have received a lot of positive feedback which just makes me feel so over the moon. If you’re interested in reading any of them, you can check out my works over on Archive of Our Own (AO3).
  8. BTS concert. I got to see one of my favorite kpop groups perform live in Canada for their Love Yourself concert tour and it was such a great experience. I took a crapton of photos, and my husband and I got to meet some friends we’d made, which was great. Seriously a great experience.
  9. My parents. Though things are still kind of hard, I’m thankful that my parents are able and willing to help my husband and I when it comes to house hunting. Not only did we receive a nice down payment amount from them (which they’d been saving for a long time for just that reason), but they’re willing to help in whatever way they can. Though we didn’t end up finding a house this year, we hope to in the future.
  10. The internet friends I’ve made. Seriously, I’m so grateful for all of the friends I’ve made this year. They’ve mad me smile and laugh, we have discussions about things, we’re there for each other to talk if needed, and they’re all just wonderful.

I’m glad for a lot of things that have happened this year, but these are just a few of the things that I wanted to highlight.

Let’s Chat! ^w^

What are you most thankful for this year? Let me know in the comments!

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I Wouldn’t Mind Santa Leaving Under the Tree

Hey peeps and welcome to another Top Ten Tuesday as hosted by the lovely people over at The Broke & the Bookish. Today’s topic is all about books we wouldn’t mind Santa leaving under our trees and boy oh boy, I know we all have pretty long lists about some of the books we’d like under our trees. So without further ado, here’s some books I’d love Santa to leave me:

1. The rest of the Fushigi Yuugi series that I don’t have. As my favorite manga series I really want to finish collecting the books, and I’m only missing seven of them, I think, but they’re kind of hard to find!

2. Made You Up by Francesca Zappia. This is a story about a girl who has a type of schizophrenia and as I’ve never read a book about that kind of perspective, I thought that it would be an interesting read.

3. Paperweight by Meg Haston. This is about a girl who has an eating disorder, and, like the book before this one, I’ve never read a book about someone with an eating disorder, so I think it would be interesting to get that perspective and see how this character deals with it.

4. The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen. I’ve been interested in reading this book for some time now, I just haven’t picked it up yet. I hear it’s a much slower fantasy story, with a much more politically based plot, which intrigues me.

5. More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera. I’ve been wanting to read this since I first heard about it, I just haven’t picked it up yet! Also, Adam’s just a fun person in general so I think that this would be a really cool read.

6. This Song Will Save Your Life by Leila Sales. I think that this book that deals with music as a sort of therapy would be a good read because I know that I use music as a sort of therapy for myself even if I’m not consciously aware of it.

7. Faking Normal by Courtney C. Stevens. This is a story about a girl who’s been raped and how she lives life after the incident and I think that this would be one of those stories that would have an impact on me.

8. All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven. A book about suicide is a very touchy subject, but it’s also a topic I’m passionate about and I hear that the writing in this book is really beautiful.

9. The rest of the Ceres: Celestial Legend books that I don’t own. Again, like the Fushigi Yuugi series, I don’t own all of the books to some of my favorite series by Yuu Watase, so I’ll also include Imadoki! Nowadays! here, too.

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10. Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow. Yup. #noshame #Hamiltontrash

Let’s Chat! ≧◡≦

What books would you love Santa to leave you? If you don’t want books, what kinds of things would you hope to find under the tree? Let me know!

Top Ten Tuesday: Holiday Gift Guide – Small Businesses

Hey peeps and welcome to another Top Ten Tuesday as hosted by the lovely people over at The Broke & the Bookish. So today’s topic is a holiday gift guide! I did one last year where it was much broader and I talked about several things you can get the book lover in your life, so today I thought I’d talk about some small businesses that you should definitely check out for the bookish lover in your life!

1. Evie Bookish – Evie has such a talent when it comes to bookish designs! I love her products a lot (I’m expecting my second one by her soon) and I think she’s definitely worth checking out and potentially ordering something from.

2. Paper Fury – Cait is not only the Queen of Everything, but she also has a shop with bookish and writing related items! Her sassy self comes out even in her products, which are adorable and so fun.

3. Muggle Library Candles – This lovely little shop makes bookish inspired candles in 4oz and 9oz sizes! I’m expecting my first candle from them soon, but I’m so excited! They have scents like The Night Lord, AIDAN, The Forbidden Forest, and more. Plus, some of their candles sparkle, and if you’re a shiny/sparkle lover like me, then this is the shop for you.

4. Novel Ink Designs – She does some really cool stuff with bookmarks and other book inspired things! I believe some of her bookmarks are made by burning? Don’t quote me on that, but they’re customizable and super cute!

5. Novelly Yours – More candles! These candles are so cute and there are so. Many. Scents. Like, how could you choose just one? Plus they’re super affordable and from what I hear they smell amazing. One day I’ll own a mini collection!

6. Novel Heartbeat – Even more candles! Jessi also does custom made orders and necklaces and clay dragons. Her shop is also just as cute, so check it out!

7. Bookworm Boutique – Lauren has cute bookish related items up on Society 6 that are simpler in design if you’re more into the minimalistic stuff. Lots of phrases, Harry Potter, and more await there!

8. Happy Hello! – THE CUTEST BOOKMARKS OF EVER. I swear, you won’t be able to resist them. Why don’t I have any in my own life? I need them. She offers a lot from series with multiple characters, so your fangirl/boy heart will be forever happy.

9. Uppercase Box – Yes, my favorite monthly subscription! I love the bookish swag, the awesome signed books, and just being able to see what will come each month. It’s so fun and I definitely recommend checking them out!

10. Fairyloot – Another fun monthly book subscription box that is very pretty and hosts a lot of fun items each month. I’ve seen a lot of the boxes since they launched and I SO want one!

Let’s Chat! ≧◡≦

What do you think of my suggestions? Is there anything specific you want this holiday season? What would you suggest for gifts?

Top 5 Wednesday: Books to Read By the Fire

Welcome to another Top 5 Wednesday as hosted by Lainey of gingerreadslainey. Today’s topic is our top five favorite books to read by the fire, aka holiday/winter reads. So here are my picks in no particular order:

5. The Kate Daniels series by Ilona Andrews

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This adult urban fantasy series would be nice to curl up by the fire with because not only does it have action and fantasy, but there’s also a slow burn romance that’s just filled with tension as the books progress.

4. The Starbound trilogy by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner

This trilogy is beautiful and epic and it tells the story from six different perspectives throughout all of them. Between the lonely and dangerous world in the first book, to the war ridden, split territory world in the second, to the underworld and an mysterious beings in the third, this trilogy definitely has a lot to offer during those cold winter nights. Plus the romances are amazing.

3. The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare

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Need I say anything about this series? It’s got action, adventure, conflict, romance, demons, magic, weird creatures, kickass people, and so much more. Definitely a good read to curl up by the fire with.

2. Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell

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This story is both part sweet and bitter, but the sweet far outweighs the latter. This story is about two outcasts and how they come together to find a love that’s truer than anything they had ever experienced before. How sweet for the holidays, right?

1 . All the manga!

I love manga, so reading it is just a fun activity to do in general. You can find everything under the sun from action, adventure, romance, shoujo-ai (girl-girl love) and shonen-ai (boy-boy love), to one-shot, slice of life, horror, and so much more. Really, whatever your preference is, you can pretty much find a manga based around it. Really, all you have to do is find the one that you think best fits your winter mood.

So there you have it! My list of some of my favorite winter reads. Definitely check these out and see what you like curling by the fire with.

What books would you read during the holidays/winter time? Let me know!

Gift Guide for Book Lovers

We’re well into the holiday season, and whatever you celebrate, this is usually the time of year when we give gifts to each other. Now, as a book lover, I’d love many book themed gifts! Even writing gifts are a plus, so today I’m going to give my own thoughts and ideas for what you can give that book lover in your life!

1 . Books

I know, I know, sounds kind of cliche, right? Well, if you know someone in your life who’s been dying to read a certain book or who loves a certain genre, then try to pick out that book for them or something that you think they’d enjoy.

For example, I love fantasy. So if you were to get me a book that’s based in another world with a magic system, kickass heroes/heroines, potentially mythical creatures, and a villain I love to hate, then I’m most likely going to enjoy and read said book.

If, for example, you have someone who loves contemporary, but doesn’t necessarily want YA, then head to the fiction section and search around for something light-hearted with some splashes of romance inside.

2. Gift Cards

I know that this seems like a cop out, but really, it’s a great thing to give someone a gift card! Whether it be Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or that indie bookstore down the street, a gift card can go a long way. Not only do you give a gift, but you’re allowing that person to pick out whatever they want on their own.

3. Adult Coloring Books

I’m listing this separate from the books category because, well, you can’t really read these. They’re just a fun, imaginative way for adults to escape for a little while and relax. Focusing on coloring, on a single task, can be extremely soothing to some people, so give that stressed out book lover in your life the gift of a coloring book – and don’t forget the colored pencils!

4. Litographs

These shirts from Litographs are wicked cool because not only are they tailored to book lovers, but they include a section of a book (or the whole book) of your choice from their selection. It’s so cool and your book lover would literally be a walking book. What more could they want?

5. Etsy

Okay, you can’t give them Etsy itself, but finding cool and quirky handmade gifts on there is pretty nifty. You can find handmade bookmarks, necklaces from your favorite series, book ends, book safes, and so much more.

6. Shelves and/or Bookends

I know this can be a little pricey, but I mean, the book lover in your life needs somewhere to put their books, right? You can find cheap shelves through Target and Walmart, but if you want something a little sturdier, then maybe check out your local furniture stores. If you’re feeling up to DIY, build the shelves! Just be sure to get exact measurements and permission before doing so.

As for bookends, if your book lover already has shelves and wants to spruce them up a bit, getting bookends could be the perfect way to do it. They come in all shapes, sizes, weights, colors, and prices, so find a set that you think will match the room, the person, or the shelf.

7. Journals

Even if your book lover isn’t a writer per se, a journal can unleash a lot of untapped creativity and they may just thank you for it later. You can find or even make journals from so many different stores: Target, Walmart, Barnes & Noble, The Paper Store, maybe even the dollar store. They come in a variety of styles, colors, and sizes, so pick one that you think your book lover would like.

8. Bookmarks

Honestly, who doesn’t love a bookmark? There’s magnetic ones, steel plated, 3D picture, shapes… There’s so many different kinds of bookmarks to choose from! And again, you can find them in a lot of places. Etsy has really cute handmade ones and Barnes & Noble and other book stores carry lots of different kinds, too. Trust me, your book lover will appreciate having something to hold their place other than a scrap piece of paper or the cat.

9. Something Handmade

I don’t know if it’s just me, but I love handmade gifts. For your book lover, if you want to go the DIY route, there’s more than enough YouTube video tutorials to help you out in making little book ornaments for the tree, or really anything else you can think of. But there’s something about gifts being handmade that make it extra special, in my opinion.

10. Subscription Box

This can get pricey depending on the subscription option you pick, but a bookish subscription box could be the perfect thing to get your book lover! There are many different kinds of boxes and they all come with different books and bookish swag, so it’ll definitely keep your book lover happy for a while.

Here’s a few:

  • Owlcrate – Monthly, 3 month, 6 month subscriptions for YA book & swag
  • LitCube – Literary themed swag and book
  • Uppercase – Monthly YA book & swag
  • Book Riot – Book & bookish swag
  • The Book Drop – Choice between “Jane,” which is adult fiction, or YA

So there you have it! My gift guide for the holiday season. There’s obviously so much more that you can give your book lover that isn’t listed here, but this is a simple list that branches out to many different kinds of gifts and ideas. Get creative! No matter what you get your book lover, I’m sure they’ll, well, love it!

What do you plan on giving the book lover in your life this holiday season? Is it handmade? Store bought? Huge? Let me know what you’re giving and what you’d recommend to give!