Birthday cake

Awww, look at that baby! That baby who’s not a baby anymore! We didn’t do a big blowout birthday party this year, but we did have cake. And, really, is there anything more disgusting than an adorable baby-not-baby smeared with frosting?

In the real-life category of what I’ve been into this past month, it’s mostly writing. In addition to that, though, I’ve done the typical January things a person does. You know, budgeting and planning and looking at lots of blog posts about Whole 30 meal plans. I paid off a couple pesky bills last night and we have a date night planned for Saturday, so two of those three are going well.

I also inherited Works for Me Wednesday from Kristen at We Are THAT Family, which has been super fun so far! Despite the pressure of a book deadline and nearly three weeks solid of someone in my house being sick at all times, it’s been a decent month.

How was YOUR January? What were YOU into?

Reading January 2015

What I’m Reading:

On the day the next Veronica Mars book was released not one, but two of my friends sent messages – with photos! – bragging about already having their copies. So rude. Of course, I realized later that day that I’d also pre-ordered the book and it appeared on my Kindle as well. I haven’t read it yet, though. I can’t very well stop reading, just because I have a lot to do. But I can save this one for a reward once I have a manuscript ready to turn in. (Maybe.) (Self restraint is not my strength, especially when it comes to not reading things that are within reach on my Kindle.)

I also haven’t read If I Stay yet, and I suspect the library is not too happy that I haven’t made this [overdue] book a priority! Don’t tell the library, but here are the books I’ve read instead:

  • My True Love Gave to Me: This is an anthology of short stories. They’re all young adult, and they’re all holiday-themed. So if that’s not your thing, move along. If it is, though (if you, say, love watching Christmas movies on ABC Family…), get this one. I didn’t love all the stories, but the majority were great.
  • All Fall Down by Ally Carter: As a huge fan of Carter’s other series (Gallagher Girls and Heist Society), I’ve been looking forward to this one. Sadly, I wasn’t impressed. I didn’t mind the darker tone to this first in a new YA series, and the unreliable narrator didn’t bug me too much either. I guess it just kind of plodded and I wasn’t all that shocked by part of the “shocking” ending. Plus I now have to wait forever for the next book.
  • The Accident by Chris Pavone: I liked Expats, Pavone’s first novel, a lot. And this one certainly kept me turning pages, but I wouldn’t say I loved it. I think my biggest problem with it was the timeline. The story doesn’t flow chronologically, though the main story takes place in just one day. There are a ton of flashbacks, but they’re not labeled, so it’s hard to follow. I’m all for books that challenge my brain (Lord knows I need something more challenging than Trivia Crack!), but this seemed unnecessarily confusing. It did stick with me, though. Reading about a controversial manuscript that people are [spoiler, I guess] killed over made me even more paranoid about the huge stack of papers I’ve been working with for my book!
  • The Lost Key by Catherine Coulter & J.T. Ellison: This was the second book in Coulter’s new FBI series, and I really liked it. It’s nothing exciting, more like comfort food. But interesting comfort food with fun characters and decent suspense.

Last thing – if you haven’t read A Little Salty to Cut the Sweet by Sophie Hudson (BooMama), get it NOW. It’s FREE on the Kindle!

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What I’m Watching:

Well, I just finished watching Galavant. Eight episodes of goofy musical satire, complete with John Stamos (Uncle Jesse jousting!), Weird Al (monks with jazz hands!) and Ricky Gervais (meh.) – and, though I enjoyed it thoroughly, I think eight episodes were enough. Still, it was fun while it lasted! (And rumors say it might be back, so there’s that, too)

I’ve also been enjoying the return of Hart of Dixie and Parks & Recreation. Parks and Rec is definitely in its last season (sniff, sniff), and I suspect Hart of Dixie is, too. So I’m savoring every single minute we have left. (Similar to how many of you felt about Parenthood, I suspect. My condolences.)

Finally (unless you want a more thorough rundown of January television – and in that case, check out this post on mid-season television!), I am LOVING Hindsight on VH1.

I know, who would think that a TV show on VH1 would be good?! But it IS. So good. It’s about a woman around 40 who, on the eve of her second wedding, travels back to the eve of her first wedding – in 1995. If you have any warm feelings for 90s nostalgia, this is for you. If you love time travel or women who adore their friends, this is for you. If you typically like the sort of things I like, this is for you.

Seriously, it’s my favorite right now. (And it’s on VH1 at 8:00 pm CST on Wednesdays.)

Okay, one last thing I’m watching. So, you know that last year I watched American Idol from start to finish, mostly while feeding a newborn and often in the middle of the night. Well, like you do in this internet age, I also read recaps and reviews of each episode and ended up loving a certain video recap more than the show itself.

More than the show, you ask? Yes. And how do I know? Well, because I’m not watching Idol this year but I have still managed to watch the first three episodes of Reality Check, the TV Line video where Michael Slezak (a TV Line writer) and Melinda Doolittle (an Idol contestant from way back when) talk through the highs and lows of the show. They are hilarious. And smart. But mostly just funny. And, I’m not proud of this, I’m probably going to keep watching even though I have no plans to watch the actual reality show they discuss!

What I’m Listening To:

Uptown Funk by Bruno Mars and Thinking Out Loud by Ed Sheeran are pretty much on repeat around here. Totally different types of song (though both obviously pop), but I love them both so much! Man. Both those guys are crazy talented. I was hoping to find a picture of the two of them together, but apparently they don’t hang. Weird.

Oh, wait. Looks like Bruno shared his stage with Ed in St. Louis about a year and a half ago, where he let Ed sing The A Team during his (Bruno’s) concert. Well, still not what I was hoping for, but if you want to watch, here it is. (The A Team, I’ll admit, is not my favorite Ed Sheeran song, though it is so pretty for a tune about prostitution and drugs…)

And probably my favorite video of the month was this cute interview with Dax Shepherd on Ellen. (HT For Every Mom, which has The Best videos and articles for moms!)

So, tell me: What were YOU into this month?

This post will be linked up to Leigh Kramer’s What I’m Into.

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