We have another Michele in our group!! She’s been with us since (at least publicly) since 2017, but has come out of hiding and readily chats with us about books and life and fun this year!! 2018 has brought us yet another wonderful book friend!! 😀
And I love that many on her list today are books have many of out favorites that made OUR “best of” lists over the past years.
“…I’m gradually working my way through a lot of the oldies you all have already read.”
By way of her past comments and “three things” lists, we’ve been getting to know her quite well, and I’ll highlight some of those, here. 😉
So first… let’s get to know her a bit, shall we? 😀
1. Candy canes. Do you savor them or crunch them? Totally depends on my mood…I crunch if I’m stressed.
2. Ginger cookies or sugar cookies? Sugar cookies for sure!
3. Best holiday scent? I like the one that smells like cookies …unfortunately it always makes me hungry.. also like Bath & Body Works Tis the Season.
4. As a child was it presents on Christmas eve or day? One thing on Christmas Eve and everything else on Christmas Day
5. Anything you really want this year? A big Amazon gift card for my spontaneous book purchases
6. If you could would you live in the cottage from The Holiday? Oh yes…loved the movie and the cottage!
7. River by Joni Mitchell or Fairytale of New York by The Pogues? River by Joni Mitchell
8. Does Auld Lang Syne make you kind of sad? Yes, it always does
9. Will you be glad to see 2018 go? No, I’m not sure where it went.
10. Charlie Brown Christmas or The Grinch Who Stole Christmas? The Grinch (although I do appreciate Charlie Brown as well)
11. Choose two words to define your 2019. More exercise
12. It’s the 21st are you here in pjs watching elf? I hope so…trying to get the scoop now on what’s going on?!
If so eating or drinking what? – Probs wine ….cause holidays!
She misses her children and she can’t wait for grandchildren!
My daughter – 22, my oldest kiddo and my bestest friend (seriously I LOVE spending time with her) is home from college. She’ll be working a lot but over the weekend we were able to watch Dumplin’’ on Netflix. She hadn’t read the book (I did…and loved it). It was cute…they did a nice job…it was of course different from the book. So for those of you who haven’t read the book yet and have watched the movie…read the book. It’s still better! There’s just something about being in the character’s mind…especially with this book.
To all of you with high school seniors, enjoy every minute. Senior year always seems to go so fast! I have 3 in college now. Actually, my youngest just graduated from HS in the spring and is spending a year at home at community college before officially leaving the nest and going away – so I get to delay the “empty nest” status for a little while longer.
Two of my three kids are away at school. We kept the last one home for a year of community college. My house is too quiet…
So exciting to welcome a new little one into the world. I can’t wait until I get to be a Mimi one day — yes people, I’ve already picked a name…but we won’t tell my kids
…It Ends with Us: A Novel because I agree with Leslie that every woman should read it. I believe that so much so that it was the first Colleen Hoover book I recommended to my daughter. She read it and gave it to several friends to read as well. It’s a powerful read!
My college kiddos are home all week for Thanksgiving…enjoying having everyone under one roof…makes my heart full!
She’s an accountant (but right now would rather be reading) 😉
This is when being an accountant stinks. I want to take time off and stay home and read. But it’s yearend….so I get to reconcile inventory and other fun accounting stuff instead….boo!
She’d had surgery this year…
I just had rotator cuff surgery in July…it’s not been nice but everyone keeps telling me how I’ll be glad I did it down the line…I feel for you…
I’m still sleeping a recliner … rotator cuff surgery is for the birds… almost 5 weeks out. Just want to be able to sleep in my bed again!
Things she enjoys… things she wants:
I totally love Christmas with the Kranks!
I’m addicted to pumpkin and pecan oatmeal from Trader Joe’s. Went there yesterday to buy a few more boxes before it disappears until next year! Super yummy!
It’s on our to-do list to convert carpet to hardwood in our house too! Might be little while though…
I made the Mississippi Roast last week for the first time – – it was wonderful! Who would have thought I’d pick up recipe ideas and book suggestions in the same place…gotta love it!
I love this site…where else can I feed my book addiction and get recipes and find out about Bum Bum cream?! Btw, I made the slow cooker pesto chicken recipe I saw on here a while back and you would have thought I had given my husband the best sex ever… he was absolutely and totally in love with that chicken So thanks ladies…you made me look like a rockstar!
I made homemade spaghetti sauce in the crockpot yesterday…yummy! Of course it’s now going to be in the 90′s the next few days…I’m over hot weather!! I want fall dang it!
I made the Pesto Chicken again yesterday…cause hubby loves it, my super picky eater (youngest son) eats the heck out of it and my daughter was in from college and wanted to try it…and most obvious reason – – it’s so dang easy!! Anyway, huge hit again! I’m making the roast tomorrow.
She went on a few outings this year!
I just got home from a great 5 days in Puerta Vallarta with my hubby. I simply loved it there! It was really beautiful! The downside was the 12 hours it took to get home because of layovers and delays. It was worth it though!
…Going on a girls trip to FL in a week and trying to figure out how I’m going to maneuver security with an arm immobilizer and an arm that can’t lift very high…I need to do some investigating this week. If anyone has tips, please let me know.
Went to see a Star is Born with my hubby yesterday….absolutely adored it…the movie, the soundtrack…all of it…lots of love!
Michele G’s 2018 FAVORITES:
In 2018, I became a more active reader. I started to participate more with Maryse’s site (I was a long time lurker) and on Goodreads. As a result, I worked my way through a backlog of wonderful books. Therefore, some of these are oldies but definitely were great reads for me this year:
An Exaltation of Larks (Venery Book 1) by Suanne Laqueur – I absolutely love her writing style. This book was an epic read for me. I loved that I felt like I was right there in the middle of everything with them…unbelievable!
Michele G: …it’s such a wonderfully special book. For those of you who haven’t read it yet…do so. I simply love her writing talent…Suanne Laqueur is just so very talented. This book is kind of epic to me…so I’m savoring it…which I don’t do often.
Waiting for the Sun: Waiting for the Sun, Part One by Robin Hill – Probably one of the best debut books I’ve read. I was truly afraid to read this initially because…what if I didn’t like it? OMG!!! I didn’t like it… I freaking LOVED it!
Michele G:… I finally jumped in and read Waiting For the Sun over the weekend and can’t rave enough about how much I enjoyed it! It sat on my TBR for way too long — but hey there are a ton of books on my TBR so it was it good company! Seriously, if you haven’t read it yet, I do highly recommend it!
The Ribbon Duet by Pepper Winters – This duet was definitely a little on the taboo side with a lot of heartbreak mixed in for good measure. It’s totally my jam!
Michele G: The Boy and His Ribbon…yep it’s got all kinds of angst!!
My Oxford Year: A Novel by Julia Whelan – Another debut author that blew me away.
Michele G: I had rented the ebook through the library when I first read it because it’s a little pricey. When it went on sale recently, I bought my own copy because I know I will want to read it again!!! TRULY fabulous book!
How to Walk Away: A Novel by Katherine Center – I really enjoyed this one. I found it inspiring but not in a religious sense. It was more of a “pull yourself up and move on” kind of inspiring. I loved the quote:“When you don’t know what to do for yourself, do something for somebody else.”
Making Faces by Amy Harmon – This was my first Amy Harmon book and it was simply amazing!
Michele G: Making Faces is my favorite military book.
Kulti by Mariana Zapata – Slow burn for sure but well worth the wait!
Michele G: there are people who haven’t read The Wall of Winnipeg or Kulti? Read them now ladies!! I loved both of these soooo much!! Two of my absolute favorites!!
Fighting Destiny (The Fae Chronicles Book 1) by Amelia Hutchins – I was late to the party on this one. Why did I wait so long??
Hydraulic Level 5 (The Hydraulic Series Book 1) & Skygods (The Hydraulic Series Book 2) by Sarah Latchaw – There was some intense marital angst going on here. I wish all the time for a third book to wrap things up a little more neatly but I really loved these and am so glad I read them!
Michele G: Hydraulic Level 5…loved it…wished so hard for book 3 …but books 1 and 2 were fabulous!!
Michele G: I seriously could have used buddies for these – pure free for all tears flowing down my face and me saying no to the book as I’m reading it. Such good reads though – unbelievably beautiful books.
I read a lot of Emma Scott this year and could have put them all on here. But I will reserve the honors for my absolute favorites:
I’m reading Full Tilt (one of my challenge reads from our dear Grey who apparently wants to throw me into full on depression). Thankfully Jenn made oatmeal chocolate chip cookies which I will promptly add to my survival kit! I mean I did just finish Bright Side and Gus ….so apparently I want to keep Kleenex in business! It is really good though…I mean there’s nothing like a book by Emma Scott!
Bring Down the Stars is my reigning favorite Emma Scott book…before that it was Full Tilt & All In. Basically, I’ve never read an Emma Scott book that I didn’t love!
The Cruel Prince (The Folk of the Air Book 1) by Holly Black – Great YA Fantasy read! I can’t wait for the next one which is coming out soon…
Heartbreak Warfare by Heather Orgeron and Kate Stewart – I could hardly breathe when I was reading this one. It literally kept me up all night reading!
I read Heartbreak Warfare in less than 24 hours. I was obsessed. For me it was such an emotional rollercoaster that I couldn’t sleep until I knew how it would all end. It gave me an unreal level of anxiety…but so worth it. It was an amazing story!
Maryse, I’m the indecisive one you know….
Can I add two more to my list? I want to add Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens.
I was initially drawn to it because I’m originally from NC but I was really drawn into the story. It was a beautiful story of survival…
I’m currently obsessed with the audiobook I’m listening to (Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens). Truthfully, it surprises me how much I’m loving it. Even though it’s received so many good reviews, it looked to be a little different from my typical book choices.
However, it is set in North Carolina which is where I’m from (and my parents still live there) – – so that was a big reason that I chose to read/listen to it. Otherwise, I really don’t know if I would have tried it but I’m so glad I did. I’m about 75% through. It’s a beautifully written story about survival, with a mystery, a love story and so much more thrown in.
In addition, the more I think of it, I really need to add Verity by Colleen Hoover. I found much of the plot to be disturbing and so I initially didn’t want to include it.
That said, I keep thinking about it and that is definitely the mark of a great book!
I started Verity Friday morning and finished it on Saturday…it was a crazy good trip!! I stand by my statement that I think Colleen Hoover and Tarryn Fisher are playing a prank on us…I keep waiting for her to say…JK it was really Tarryn who wrote the book…but seriously, it shows her wide range….it was twisty good!!
I’m having a lot of fun seeing the reactions people are having while reading Verity! It’s almost as much fun as reading the book myself for the first time! Just had to share that somewhere that people could actually appreciate it…