Lists & Recommendations

My Favorite Books of 2021

Hello and welcome to a bit of a throwback to 2021! I wanted to take a moment and share some of my favorite reads of the past year and give them a bit of a shoutout. Last year I did not do great with my reading numbers, I read about half as much as a usually do, but I am happy to say there were a few I really enjoyed. Here is a list of the ones that stuck out to me the most in no particular order.

The Books

Dune by Frank Herbert

Heaven by Mieko Kawakami

The Book of Accidents by Chuck Wendig

Tokyo Ueno Station by Miri Yū

Tyll by Daniel Kehlmann

White Tears/Brown Scars: How White Feminism Betrays Women of Color by Ruby Hamad

Later by Stephen King

How to Think Like a Roman Emperor: The Stoic Philosophy of Marcus Aurelius by Donald J. Robertson

Sign Off 2020
Sign off, thanks for reading!

Tumblr Twitter | Goodreads

Monthly Digest

Monthly Digest | December 2021

Hello and welcome to a fairly short recap of what what reading, crafting, and life was like over the past month. This final month of 2021 was faster than I care to admit, but it was still filled with some great things. I am really overall happy with how this month went, but also this past year. Even with everything going on I feel like it was an improvement from the year before and I hope that next year is even better than this one for myself and all of you. I am wishing you all a wonderful 2022! Now, on to how my month was.

Reading

This month was a bit weird when it came to reading. I ended up only reading one book, The Bear and the Paving Stone by Toshiyuki Horie and translated by Geraint Howells, I ended up giving it 4 stars. As for a book haul I picked up 5 books only because of the 50% off hardcover sale at BN. If you want to see the books I picked up from that haul you can see that in my post; Barnes and Noble 50% Hardcover Haul.

Crochet, Knitting and Crafting

As for crafting, knitting, and crocheting I ended up finishing all of my WIPs so I can start off 2022 with a clean slate. I already know the first project I am going to be casting on. I completed the 2021 12 Days of Tosh Advent Crochet Cowl designed by Toni Lipsey of TL Yarn Crafts, who is just an amazing designer. The colors were just so beautiful and it was a blast to work on for the first 12 days of December. Next I finished the Kari Shawl by Sari Nordlund. I absolutely love how it came out and I can’t wait to block it and use it! The last project I finished this month is Modern Double Crochet V-Stitch Blanket by Daisy Farm Crafts. I have been working on this blanket on and off since 2019 so I am happy to finally be able to use it!

Life

This month was a bit of a roller coaster of good news and some bummer news, but overall the month was really awesome. I got to catch up with some friends I had lost touch with due to our busy lives. I got to go to a traditional tea, which was very lovely! I didn’t do much outside this month, it was a bit too cold for me personally, but I got to spend a lot of time with my loved ones and catching up with friends and honestly, that was the beat part of this month.

Sign Off 2020
Sign off, thanks for reading!

Tumblr Twitter | Goodreads

Reading Challenges

2021 Reading Goals Revisited

Hello and welcome to my reflection on my 2021 reading goals. I feel like the first half of the year went really, really slow and then the second half ended up going way too fast. Funny how time seems to do that. Anyway, as I do with other years, I wanted to take a moment to look at the goals I set for myself a year ago and see how I faired.

Achieved

Use the library once a month-I did this for sure! I used the library for audiobooks constantly this year and I am so thankful they have the digital resources that they do between those audiobooks and ebooks.

Read 12 nonfiction books-As of writing this post I have read a total of 19 nonfiction books!

Read 50 books – As of writing this post I have read a total of 73 books, so I accomplished this!

Reread The Hobbit and the Lord of the Ring Trilogy – I did it! I reread The Hobbit and the LOTR trilogy over again. It was a lot of fun to dive back into these books the last few months of 2021.

Not Achieved

Read the International Booker Prize – I read 4 of the 6 books from the shortlist this year. I do have the other two on my kobo and I still plan to read them, but I am such a mood reader I didn’t want to read these great books when I was not in the mood.

Read The Farseer Trilogy and The Liveship Traders Trilogy by Robin Hobb – This one I half did. I read the entire Farseer Trilogy, but I ended up DNFing The Liveship Traders Trilogy for now.

Keep my owned TBR under 10 books – I have it in the 20s, so not too far off, but not the goal I set for myself.

How did you do with your 2021 goals?

Sign Off 2020
Sign off, thanks for reading!

Tumblr Twitter | Goodreads

Monthly Intent

Monthly Intent | November 2021

Hello and welcome to a another Monthly Intent post where I am going through my plans and goals for the month in various aspects of my life including; reading, crafting and general adventures! This month I know the weather is really going to be getting cold and I am going to be trying to stay as cozy and warm as I can inside my house. Due to this, some of my ideas of the month are not as adventurous as previous months.

Reading Plans

This month I am thinking I am going to be focusing on nonfiction reads and taking part, kinda sorta, in Nonfiction November. The only offical account I can see for this month long readathon is a twitter account with the name @NonficNovember. Here you can find an accountment video and general information. Generally the goal is to read nonfiction in November. Currently on my shelf I have quite a few nonfiction novels that I am going to allow myself to pick from.

  • Titian by Ron Chernow
  • The Unwanted by Michael Dobbs
  • Sons of Cain by Peter Vronsky
  • Writing On Stone by Christina Marsden Gillis
  • Meditations by Marcus Aurelius
  • How to Be a Stoic by Penguin
  • Stoic Wisdom: Ancient Lessons for Modern Resilience by Nancy Sherman

Crochet and Knitting Plans

This past month I did a lot of crocheting and making for others trying to get all these presents done with plenty of time incase something comes up. Thankfully, I finished all but one present. The one that remains I just added to my list about a week ago, so there would have been no way to do it sooner. This last and final present is the Avon Throw Blanket by TL Yarn Crafts. I am really excited to make this one honestly because it is chunky yarn, but simple with a little pop. Following that I am going to focus on making my after thought heel socks. I am not really following a pattern for this I am using my own measurements so I have nothing really to share pattern wise. I will say I am inspired by

This past month I did a lot of crocheting and making for others trying to get all these presents done with plenty of time incase something comes up. Thankfully, I finished all but one present. The one that remains I just added to my list about a week ago, so there would have been no way to do it sooner. This last and final present is the Avon Throw Blanket by TL Yarn Crafts. I am really excited to make this one honestly because it is chunky yarn, but simple with a little pop. Following that I am going to focus on making my after thought heel socks. I am not really following a pattern for this I am using my own measurements so I have nothing really to share pattern wise. I will say I am inspired by Knitty Natty who make so many socks! I think I might use her tutorial for the heel, but I am not totally sure yet.

Random Goals

When it comes to other goals in my life I would really like to go to a yarn shop this month. I have not been to a yarn dedicated store in almost 4 or 5 months and I have a project in mind that I want special yarn for. I am hoping to be able to bring a friend along with me, but we shall see how that goes. Other than that I would love to have a really delicious hot coca when the weather turns colder and snuggle up with a good book.

Sign Off 2020
Sign off, thanks for reading!

Tumblr Twitter | Goodreads

Monthly Digest

Monthly Digest | August 2021

Hello and welcome to my monthly digest where I discuss the books I read and hauled, crafts and crocheting I completed as well as random life stuff I did or tried. I have to say my reading was really flying this month, I read so much and I am so happy my reading mojo is back in full swing. It really has been a struggle this year and I am not quite sure why and what changed.

Some of the books read this month, sock I was working on and a blanket I finished crocheting.

Reading

  • Read Tyll by Daniel Kehlmann
  • Read Evidence of the Affair by Taylor Jenkins Reid
  • Read The Last Negroes at Harvard: The Class of 1963 and the 18 Young Men Who Changed Harvard Forever by Kent Garrett and Jeanne Ellsworth
  • Read Dark Archives: A Librarian’s Investigation into the Science and History of Books Bound in Human Skin by Megan Rosenbloom
  • Read The Enlightenment of the Greengage Tree by Shokoofeh Azar
  • Read Treasure by Oyinkan Braithwaite
  • Read Snowflakes by Ruth Ware
  • Read Women in Art: 50 Fearless Creatives Who Inspired the World by Rachel Ignotofsky
  • Read Assassin’s Quest by Robin Hobb
  • Read Tokyo Ueno Station by Miri Yū
  • Hauled Once There Were Wolves by Charlotte McConaghy
  • Hauled Fresh by Margot Wood
  • Hauled The Book of Accidents by Chuck Wendig

Total TBR Count: 33, Last Month: 35

Crochet & Crafting

This month I tried something new, something I didn’t think I was going to be capable of. I knitted a sock! I have never knitted before, but I signed up for a sock class and I actually did it! I didn’t think it was possible, but I did it! I am really proud of myself because for me knitting is much harder than crocheting. I think I am going to continue to knit socks or little things along with my larger crochet projects because I have found they use different muscles in the arms and hands and it gives them a break while I still get to work on stuff.

I am almost done with my poncho, I am loving how it is coming out, but it is starting to annoy me. Four hundred stitches per row! I only have 6 or 7 rows left of the body and then the little sleeves. I also started and finished a blanket that I LOVED how it came out.

As for other crafting I didn’t do to much this month, learning how to knit took up too much of my brain power. I am thrilled with that I accomplished though! Organizationally, I bagged up all of my yarn and labeled them by project so they are protected from things that love to eat yarn. But, also great for when I want to start a new project everything is easily organized and I don’t need to dig through all my skeins.

Life

I tried making a London Fog Latte for the first time. I took a recipe from Gimme Some Oven. It is a really yummy latte, I have made it quite a few times since the first one and a great one to have instead of a cup of coffee. This month I focused on relaxing mornings and then productive days. I have done a lot of cleaning and getting rid of things I don’t use. I mainly focused on the storage bins under my bed, I ended up emptying an entire one. I also deep cleaned my office and got rid of about two bags of things and was able to donate one of the bags and the other was shredding since it was paperwork. It felt good to finally tackle those projects.

Sign Off 2020
Thanks for Reading! Sincerely, Luna

Tumblr Twitter | Goodreads

Bullet Journal Jottings, Writing & More

Bullet Journal Jottings August 2021

Items Used

My Bullet Journal

August dashboard pages

This months calendar I took some inspiration from Happy D. Artist on youtube. I really liked how they had the month written in larger bubble letters a little behind the actually daily boxes. I did however leave off the days of the week labels because for me I don’t really need it personally. I highlighted the days I am meant to be posting on the blog so I can visually see it easier like I did in July. Lastly I added some pothos doodles to fill in the empty space. I have never really drawn this plant before so it was a nice little challenge.

Book Digest and Monthly Intent pages

My next two spaces are exactly the same as last month. On the left I am planning on keeping track of the books I read arrow pointing to the left, hauled books, arrow to the right, and two arrows pointing towards each other will mark hauled and read in the month. As for my Monthly Intent, when I write those down I am just going to have a check box there to check off. I like keeping these very plain so I have a lot of room to add throughout the month without needing to use another page.

30 Day Uke and Daily Doodle Tracker

These two monthly trackers are new to me because I am in the process of learning to play the uke. I am using the 30 Day Uke Challenge by Bernadette Teaches Music so I wanted to create a tracker to make sure I am on target with my daily studies. I am really loving it so far, I started in July so I have a few boxes already shaded in.

On the right I wanted to do a daily doodle so I put this list of prompts combining lists already created by psychara_art and goretober. I am tempted to make them all houses because I loved Minnie Small‘s art dealing with houses and I thought it would be a fun challenge for myself, but also keep me from making the doodles too complicated.

Sign Off 2020

Tumblr Twitter | Goodreads

Monthly Intent · To Be Read

Monthly Intent | August 2021

Books I plan on reading this month!

Hello and welcome to my monthly intent post for August! I hope everyone has a lovely July, and August will even better! This month I have quite a few things I would like to see or give a try. I am really hoping the weather ends up cooperating because a lot of them are outdoorsy or a DIY I would need good ventilation.

Reading Plans

This upcoming month I have three books I really would love to get to. The first one being Tyll by Daniel Kehlmann, I have wanted to read this for months and for some reason I just have not picked it up. I was in a bit of a slump after the first few months of the year, so I am going to blame it on that. Thankfully, I think it is starting to go away since my reading has gone up a bit the last few months. Next, I really would love to read Mouthful of Birds by Samanta Schweblin. I read Fever Dream by the same author and I really loved it so I have very high hopes. Her last one had a bit of a horror twist that I was not expecting. I want to slowly read all of her stuff. Last, but not least is Writing on Stone by Christina Marsden Gillis. I recently picked this up, but I just want to get to it right away! It’s a nonfiction about a small island community in Maine.

Crochet Plans

This month I want to finally finish my Macchiato Crochet Poncho created by BrianaKdesigns. I am loving how it is coming out and I just cannot wait to get to wear it in the fall. Another thing I want to attempt to do is knit a pair of socks. I signed up for a class of sorts to try and learn, we shall see how it goes! I do not have the highest of hopes, BUT I am excited to give it a try and also have the support if I need it. Even if they come out wonky I will love them. I might just hang them on the wall as an art piece instead of functioning socks though. lol. If I happen to have time I have a few smaller projects I want to work on to try to get ahead on gifts during the holiday season.

Random Goals

This month I have it in my head to dye my own yarn. I found a method using blackbeans and I was thinking of giving it a go. The post I found is called Natural Dyeing with Black Beans by fiberartsy. I just need to find the right kind of yarn to dye, I feel like that is going to be the most difficult. I want to use a cotton, but we shall see! Next, I really want to go to an art museum of some sort. I have a few that are within my state so I am trying to decide which one I would feel the most comfortable going to.

What are you planning on doing this month?

Sign Off 2020

Tumblr Twitter | Goodreads

Monthly Digest

Monthly Digest | July 2021

Hello and welcome to my monthly digest post where I talk about how the past month has gone in terms of reading, crafting, and random life events. This month was a really fun one. I did some reading I didn’t think I would get to and created quite a few things as well. I went on a few adventures, which was a great change of scenery since I have not really gone far from home over the last 15 months or so. Anyway, here is what happened over the past month!

Book stack of read books, current crochet project, and my D.I.Y. room spray.

Reading

  • Hauled The Domestic Life of the Jersey Devil by Bill Sprouse
  • Hauled Tokyo Ueno Station by Miri Yu
  • Read Men Without Women by Haruki Murakami
  • Read Later by Stephen King LOVED
  • Hauled The Field House by Robin Clifford Wood
  • Hauled The House of Lobster Cove by Jane Goodrich
  • Hauled Writing on Stone by Christina Marsden Gillis
  • Hauled A Haunting Fog by Heidi Martin Washburn
  • Hauled Wild! Weird! Wonderful Maine! by Earl D. Brechlin
  • Read Cursed Objects by J.W. Ocker
  • Read How to Think Like a Roman Emperor by Donald Robertson LOVED
  • Read The Only Good Indians by Stephen Graham Jones
  • Read Dead Blondes and Bad Mothers: Monstrosity, Patriarchy, and the Fear of Female Power by Sady Doyle LOVED
  • Hauled and Read a story I cannot share, but know that it was great!

Total TBR Count: 35, Last Month: 33

Crochet & Crafting

Over this month I crocheted quite a bit, I made at least 4 market bags and gifted them to family members. I really need to make myself one in the future. Now that we can start using our own bags again I think it would be great to use for produce instead of the plastic bags. I did also made a ton of progress on the  Macchiato Crochet Poncho created by BrianaKdesigns. I am about 1/3 of the way done with it, but sadly I did not have the time to dedicate to it like I thought I would this month. I am planning on continuing this pattern in the upcoming month. Another crafting this I did this month was restore an antique picnic basket to use for my larger crochet projects because I have a few blankets I need to be making in the near future. I resealed it and even sewed a liner, a first for me! It even had button holes! As for the goal of making a room spray I ended up making the Mood-Boosting Blend room spray by Hello Glow. It included mixing up orange, lemon, eucalyptus, and peppermint essential oils with a little bit of vodka and filtered water. If you want to make some for yourself, I suggest checking out their post. I really loved how mine ended up smelling. I keep using it and I plan on making it again!

Life

Yard when staying with family.

This month was filled with a ton of really memorable things. As I mentioned in the start of this post, I went on a few adventures. The first being an almost 2 hour trip (one way) with a friend to a indie yarn store called Yarnia. I went a little over the top with picking up yarn because there were so many beautiful options I don’t see normally. Also, can I just say the name of this place is just perfect! A pun involving reading and yarn, not easily topped. I also decided while I was here I would attempt to maybe learn how to knit…it isn’t going so well. I am a crocheter and to be honest, I think it is going to be hard to break away from that.

Another thing I did was finally visit with family I have not seen in nearly 2 years. We got to spend a week together in the middle of the woods. It was so peaceful and calming. It was just great to spend quality time with them once again and also not have to deal with all of the people and congestion that goes on in my daily life. I ended up doing a lot of reading, relaxing, and just spending time outside. Spending time outside and in nature really is something I treasure because it also grounds me no matter what is going on in my life. I really wish I made it more of a priority because it makes such a difference. I will for sure need to work on that going forward.

I hope you had a wonderful July and have a few great memories to dwell upon in the future. I would love it if you shared something you tried or did over the past month. I also hope you have a wonderful month ahead!

Sign Off 2020

Tumblr Twitter | Goodreads

Bullet Journal Jottings, Writing & More

Bullet Journal Jottings July 2021

Items Used

My Bullet Journal

I am keeping this bullet journal quite simple since I am really just starting to get back into it. The main layout is my monthly calendar that goes across two pages. Each square is 6×6 so I have plenty of room to write blog post ideas and other important information. In the picture above I had to cover everything in post-it notes. I used the micro for the actual calendar, but I used the Acrylograph pen for the month title. This is my first time using it and I am not to thrilled. It has great pigmentation and does not bleed at all, which is amazing. Sadly, it kept flicking the ink everywhere, which you might be able to see. It looks like paint splatter, now if that is something you like great, me not so much. I also used this pen to add some lines at the bottom of the page to get rid of of some of the dead space. Lastly, I added washi tape down the left side. This blue washi tape has gold suns and stars, green snakes, and blue leaves.

My next two spreads are pretty simple. On the left side I did a boarder around the page and labeled it Book Digest where I am going to keep a running tab of the book incoming and outgoing from my TBR. On the right side I outlines it all the same with the micron pen and labeled this one with Monthly Intent using the Acrylograph pen to make the two pages more cohesive with the calendar. My monthly intent page has the goals I set for myself in this months post you can find here, Monthly Intent. I created a checklist type setup and wrote the books I want to read, How to Think Like a Roman Emperor and Later. As well as writing the crochet project and a random thing I would like to do, which includes crocheting a poncho and creating a room spray.

Sign Off 2020

Tumblr Twitter | Goodreads

Monthly Intent

Monthly Intent | July 2021

Hello and welcome to “new” kind of post here on my blog. In the past I just did monthly TBRs and didn’t really talk about my goals outside of this or share the things I wanted to try to get to during the month. Well, I decided to change that and post a monthly intent post to share what I intend to do over the course of the month book wise and beyond!

Reading Plans

This upcoming month I really want to read a few books, but the two I want to prioritize this month are How to Think Like a Roman Emperor by Donald Robertson and Later by Stephen King. When it comes to How to Think Like a Roman Emperor I am curious to continue looking into philosophy. I took a class when I was in school and really enjoyed it, but I have not really explored it more since. I am really hoping to chance that. As for King’s book, I really loved the last two books he wrote for hard case crime, so I am hoping that this is another great mystery penned by King.

Crochet Plans

This month I want to finally tackle a project I have been putting off. I have all the yarn for the project and everything, I just have been so intimidated by it that I keep picking up other projects first. The pattern in question is the Macchiato Crochet Poncho created by BrianaKdesigns. It is a beautiful sweater/poncho that I really want to have done for the fall months so I can wear it out and about. I have been dabaling in creating wearables this year outside of scarfs and hats and I already notice an improvement in my abilities. I am hoping I have gotten good enough to create this beautiful pattern. I ended up picking up Brava Bulky Weight Yarn in the color Sienna.

Random Goals

Something different I would love to do this month is create a room spray. I normally just buy some from the store and call it a day, but I think it would be a ton of fun to try and make one myself and really tailor it to my tastes. This is not to say that the store bought ones or bad, I tend to like most of the ones I have picked up. I just think it would be fun to mix my own or follow a guide to create a scent I really adore.

Sign Off 2020

Tumblr Twitter | Goodreads