loves & latest: April 8, 2019

monday musings

 

loves

reads

A Dangerous Collaboration by Deanna Raybourn

Veronica Speedwell is back! Deanna Raybourn is an instant read for me. The minute I learned A Dangerous Collaboration was being released, I placed it on hold at my local library. The only bad thing about loving this series is having to wait for the next book.

random

planner stickers

It was bound to happen. You can’t watch planning videos without being bitten by the sticker bug. However, I will exercise restraint, not matter how glittery the pack.

on the web

authortube

I’m a regular viewer of the #authortube community, but lately I’ve been making it part of my practice. So much to learn, so many writers to learn from. Lately, I’ve been deep-diving into Heart Breathings, iWriterly, and The Creative Penn.


Latest

podcast

bluestocking-circleListen to the latest episode of The Bluestocking Circle Podcast – Episode 20: Pacific Rim… our second, unanimous 4-sock rating 🙂 .

If you want to hear three lady nerds talk about their favorite books and movies, give us a listen on Podomatic, Apple Podcasts, Google Play, or Spotify. Also available on YouTube.

Follow us @bluesoxcircle on Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.

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loves & latest: March 11, 2019

monday musings

loves

reads

audiobooks in general

I used to hate the thought of someone reading to me (personal weirdness involving mouth sounds), then I discovered the magic of audiobooks and the talented people who narrate them. Audiobooks are making my commute 100% better, giving me 2 hours of “passive” reading a day, and allowing me to catch up on podcast assignments without worrying about adding another book to my reading list.

I download my audiobooks for free through my library’s Libby, Hoopla, and audiobook lending programs.

beauty

establishing a beauty budget

I recently come to terms with my beauty spending and realized that I am not an all-or-nothing person. I am project panning and looking to keep my spending to a minimum, but I don’t need to fall into total austerity. This is an area that revealed how far my Upholder tendency goes, as I found myself experiencing [unnecessarily] obsessive thoughts regarding my spending in this area. Setting a budget is the middle-ground for me.

general

writer youtube and blogs

As I prepare for a new writing project, I’ve been diving into the writer community, looking for inspiration, lessons, and new ways to approach my work. One of my recent favorites is Sarah Cannon’s Heart Breathings blog and channel – a great resource for anyone who wants to start work on a writing project.

I recently purchased her HB90 planner template (because she’s also a planner addict) and can’t wait to set it up for April (it’s a 3 month, 90 day planner).


latest

podcast

bluestocking-circleListen to the latest episode of The Bluestocking Circle Podcast – Episode 19: Star Trek & Galaxy Quest… we have so many thoughts.

If you want to hear three lady nerds talk about their favorite books and movies, give us a listen on Podomatic, Apple Podcasts,Google Play, or Spotify. Also available on YouTube.

Follow us @bluesoxcircle on Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.

loves & latest: February 18, 2019

monday musings

Goals edition

Loves

Reads

Personal finance books 

2019 is the year when I focus on building wealth. Yep. That’s the plan. I have a solid relationship with money and live relatively debt-free (which means, I pay off credit card debt within a reasonable amount of time, generally 1-3 cycles, depending on my budget). I have an emergency fund and committed to using a cash budget for regular expenses; now it’s time to focus on investing, so I’m reading all the things.

Video on my favorites coming in March.

Beauty

Project Pan 2019

More on this to come, but if you watched my makeup capsule, you’ll know that I want to use up what I own and pan at least 2-3 of my products. I have two lipsticks that I’m rotating at the moment (about 80% of the time), and a small eye shadow palette that I would like to hit pan on in the coming months. My goal is to use up what I have and repurchase what I love.

Habits

Using my French press at work

I’m a millennial. I’m destroying my future one latte at a time. (ha!) Jokes aside, $5 a day for my latte habit is not sustainable. To make up for it, I’ve been brewing my own coffee and adding an indulgent creamer (because this is also the year I stop caring about ingredients and start living my best life). Being on a cash budget certainly makes it harder to part with those $5.

Project management

In library land, I always say instruction doesn’t make sense until the point of need. That’s also how I feel about project management tools. I tried to use Trello a few years ago and found it incomprehensible. Now that I’m trying to balance blogging, youtube, podcasting, and writing, it suddenly makes sense. I am addicted and the customizable backgrounds make me happy.


 

Latest

Podcast

bluestocking-circleWe’ve been busy with a season of sci-fi favorites 🙂

Our most recent episodes include:

If you want to hear three lady nerds talk about their favorite books and movies, give us a listen on Podomatic, Apple Podcasts,Google Play, or Spotify. Also available on YouTube.

Follow us @bluesoxcircle on Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.

loves & latest: December 10, 2018

monday musings

Loves

Reads

The Phantom Tree by Nicola Cornick

I love a good time-slip and this book is the perfect blend of history, mystery, and romance. I had a serious book hangover after reading it, and can’t wait to read more by Nicola Cornick (she has a long history as a romance writer, but this is her second work of historical fiction). Her first historical novel, House of Shadows, is equally engaging.

Beauty

Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush in Mood Exposure

I love blush. I love blush almost as much as I love lipstick  (and that’s saying a lot). Mood Exposure might just bump Benefit Dandelion from my holy grail makeup collection (not least of which, because Hourglass is cruelty free, whereas Benefit is not). It’s the perfect blend of color and highlight, and gives the right amount of glow to my cheeks. It makes me look fresh-faced and ready for the day every time I swipe it on.

I have the mini travel size and I can see it lasting for years, you don’t need much at all to get a good amount of color.

Not affiliate links.


Latest

bluestocking-circlePodcast

Winter is the perfect time to cozy up with a podcast 🙂

Our most recent episodes include:

If you want to hear three lady nerds talk about their favorite books and movies, give us a listen on Podomatic, Apple Podcasts,Google Play, or Spotify.

Follow us @bluesoxcircle on Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.

loves & latest: September 17, 2018

monday musings

Loves

Reads

Catwoman: Soulstealer (DC Icons Series) by Sarah J. Maas

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I’ve been pleasantly surprised by this series. A few months ago, I read Batman: Nightwalker by Marie Lu and really enjoyed it. The Icons series reimagines the history behind the characters, going beyond the usual origin story. You don’t need to know everything about the characters to enjoy the stories; this is a modern takes on classic characters that encourages new readers. To comics fans I say, “They’re worth a read.” I’ve heard doubts about the YA rating, but these are YA only insofar as the characters are young and not yet established in their roles. Selena is 17 when the novel opens, 20 throughout the rest of the story. Bruce is 19 in Nightwalker. I’ve yet to read Wonder Woman: Warbringer, but she’s next on my list. Sarah J. Maas does a wonderful job of imagining a backstory that doesn’t involve sexual abuse, which is a major win in my book. Her Selena is different, but well-developed.

Beauty

Sappho New Paradigm CC Cream in Light

The only thing that could make this product more perfect is SPF. It’s the most perfect color match I’ve found in a green beauty product, no scent, not stickiness, it dries matte and doesn’t oxidize. I LOVE IT!


Latest

Podcast

bluestocking-circle

Didn’t know I co-host a podcast? I do!

The latest episode of The Bluestocking Circle celebrates Garth Nix’s Sabriel. Minisode 13.5 announces the next work in our series. If you want to hear three lady nerds talk superheroes, give us a listen on Podomatic, Apple Podcasts, Google Play, or Spotify.

Follow us @bluesoxcircle on Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.

loves & latest: August 6, 2018

monday musings

Loves

Reads

Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik

Uprooted was one of my favorite books of 2017 and I was ecstatic when I learned that there would be another work in Naomi Novik’s re-imagining of Eastern European fairy tales and folklore. This one concerns a Rumpelstiltskin like story. It’s a dark, compelling story and one I’m intrigued to finish.

Sabriel by Garth Nix

An old favorite that I recently revisited, Sabriel is a classic and still perfect in every way. It is also the coming theme for the next episode of The Bluestocking Circle, so read up now!

Beauty

Medieval by Lipstick Queen

This has genuinely become my go-to lipstick for every day. It’s sheer and glossy with just the right amount of color to look natural and put together. I also find that the formula lasts long and does not dry out my lips – win-win!

Affiliate links provide a tiny stipend that supports the podcast.


Latest

Podcast

bluestocking-circleDidn’t know I co-host a podcast? I do! 

The latest episode of The Bluestocking Circle is on The Flash (CW). Our previous episode was on The Incredibles and Incredibles II. If you want to hear three lady nerds talk superheroes, give us a listen on Podomatic, Apple Podcasts, Google Play, or Spotify.

Follow us @bluesoxcircle on Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.

loves & latest: June 11, 2018

monday musings

Loves

Reads

I recently devoured Sarah J. Maas’s Court of Thorns and Roses series (minus the recently released novella, which I will remedy forthwith). Faeries, complex characters, and unexpected sexiness, this is the kind of story I wanted when New Adult became a thing (and completely failed to meet my expectation).

I also mention the series in the video below.

Beauty

The heat is on and I’ve been feeling nostalgic. I decided to switch my usual RMS blush for an oldie but a goodie: Benefit DandelionI wore Dandelion for years (through college and beyond), but stopped using it after greening my makeup. It’s not clean; it’s not cruelty free; it is all things bad and evil, but I love the color and I can live with my poor choices.


Latest

Podcast

bluestocking-circleEpisode 10: Gotham by Gaslight (hosted by yours truly) is now available. This episode focuses on Gotham by Gaslight (the film and graphic novel) and general thoughts on BatCat.

You can find the episode on Podomatic, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and Google Play.

Video

May Update

Health, writing, books, and tieks!

 

loves & latest: April 23, 2018

monday musings

Loves

Reads

Finished the Veronica Speedwell mysteries and now I’m in that weird space where I can’t find a book that lives up… In the meantime, I’m trying to find the time to read Doing Harm: The Truth About How Bad Medicine and Lazy Science Leave Women Dismissed, Misdiagnosed, and Sick by Maya Dusenbery (because as a woman who has been dismissed, misdiagnosed, and chronically sick, I want all the support I can get).

Beauty

A follow-up:

A few posts ago, I gushed about how much I love the Ilia lip conditioner in Pink Moon, then I started to suspect it was causing some irritation. I stopped using it for a few weeks and wore it again last week. Suspicion confirmed, it makes my lips look like I’ve been out in the cold too long. Really dry and red around the edges. I’m debating whether I should return to Sephora or give it away. It had such promise.

Other things I’m loving:

My InstantPot! My mom gave me a mini and I’m loving the speed and efficiency it provides. Even just using the saute function speeds up my meal prep and saves me the extra time and heating costs. (Old Florida apartments were not made for climate change temperatures. My apartment is hot and the kitchen heats up like you wouldn’t believe. Needless heat? No thank you.)


Latest

Podcast

Minisode 8.5: Final thoughts on Star Wars/Spaceballs (and even Howl’s Moving Castle), favorites, and an announcementbluestocking-circle

In other news: The podcast is now available on Spotify!

You can find the episode on Podomatic, Apple Podcasts, or Google Play.

Video

April Update

All the things, and where have I been?

 

loves & latest: April 2

monday musings

Loves

Reads

A Perilous Undertaking by Deanna Raybourn

Yep, I had to come back for more. This series is my new addiction and I can’t wait to pick up the next book from my library. (I’m currently #4 in line)

Batman: Nightwalker by Marie Lu

I ordered this one for my own library collection (ICYMI, I’m a librarian). I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I was intrigued by the idea of YA not-yet-superheroes and Marie Lu does not disappoint. Her Bruce reads like a real person with real doubts and these are all good things.

Beauty

I tried the Tarte BB Tinted Treatment 12-hour Primer in Light and I think I finally found a color match. Not 100% green, but I don’t have a problem with the ingredients listed. It scores a 1 on the EWG Skin Deep database and feels really nice on the skin (it’s a cream to powder finish with physical SPF). I’m saving it for travel and ordering a full size.

 


Latest

Podcast

bluestocking-circleEpisode 8: Star Wars: A New Hope and Spaceballs is live! Give us a listen and follow the pod @bluesoxcircle on Twitter and Insta.

You can find the episode on Podomatic, Apple Podcasts, or Google Play.

Loves & Latest for March 26

monday musings

Loves

Reads

The Sheriff of Babylon by Tom King and Mitch Gerads

The boy says I’m having a weird literary affair with Tom King. He may be right. I enjoy his writing and this is an incredibly compelling story set during the so-called War on Terror. A hard read, but a good (and important) one.

A Duke Like No Other by Valerie Bowman

I needed something light after a series of emotionally heavy reads (see above) and this sweet romance about second chances fit the bill. Rather than the classic Duke meets lady (or other bold female) trope, the novel reminds me of Persuasion–or Persuasion if Wentworth married Anne before misunderstandings ensued. There is a heavy dose of mystery and plenty of flashbacks, which set this apart from the typical Duke romance.

(This review is based on a ARC from NetGalley)

A Curious Beginning (A Veronica Speedwell Mystery) by Deanna Raybourn

Long on my TBR list, I was inspired to check out the first in the series after listening to an excellent interview with Deanna Raybourn on the Smart Bitches Trashy Books podcast. I read it in a day. That should tell you something of my enjoyment. Mystery, banter, and serious, slow-burn tension.

Beauty

  • After my 3+ year old elf flawless face brush came apart mid-sweep, I decided it was time for an upgrade and picked up the IT Cosmetics airbrush buffing foundation brush. While not strictly a cream foundation brush, I like the flat top and it’s soft and fluffy. All good things.
  • Spring has reignited my love Red Apple Lipstick’s Hollypeno. Sadly, they just recently discontinued this shade.
  • In “project use it up” news, I hit pan on my glossier stretch concealer (I use the medium shade).

 


 

Latest

Podcast

bluestocking-circleWe just recorded Episode 8, but you can still catch up with Episode 7.5, where we wrap up our thoughts on Howl, share more recommendations, and hatch our evil plot to make Bee watch Star Wars for the First Time(!) via a carefully orchestrated comparison to Spaceballs.

You can find the episode on Podomatic, Apple Podcasts, or Google Play.