Monthly Intent · To Be Read

Monthly Intent | August 2022

Reading Plans

I don’t have any specific books I plan on reading in August, but I do want to read 4 books in total. If I did have to choose two I most likely end up reading, I think it would have to be to finish The House Across the Lake by Riley Sager, I started read it halfway through July and I have been taking my time since I am reading it with Reg and Jenna. The second one I would have to say has a high chance of being read in August is Things We Lost in the Fire by Mariana Enríquez, I read another work by this author and absolutely loved it so I am really looking forward to picking this one up.

Crochet and Knitting Plans

As for knitting plans I really want to start working on either Morning Rituals by Andrea Mowry/(Ralvery/Makers Website) or Soldotna Crop by Caitlin Hunter (Ralvery/LoveCrafts). Both are sweater patterns, but the first would be starting the transition to fall/sweaters with beautiful cables and the Soldotna is a short sleeve colorwork crop top. Both are beautiful. I am tempted to make one more Summer top before the weather changes, but to be fair I wont have a ton of time in the month of August to knit. Decisions, Decisions.

Random Goals

For the month of August I don’t have too many goals, I am really going to do my best to relax a bit since I will have some time to myself. I really want to go on another nature walk like I did in July, it was just a really fun adventure. I also want to go to the beach as least once if not more to relax near the waves and do some reading. Like I said, I just want to relax as much as possible.

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Sign off, thanks for reading!

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Monthly Digest

Monthly Digest | January 2022

Hello and welcome to the first Monthly Digest of 2022! This month was VERY chaotic personally with work, getting sick, and just a lot of stuff that needed my attention. Somehow I managed to find time to read, make, and do some other fun things.

Reading

My reading mojo is back! I was able to finish 9 books, which is a shock because I only read 1 last month. I really was afraid that trend was going to continue. I found some winners this month and unfortunately not so great ones, but I am glad I read them.

Crochet, Knitting and Crafting

Apiarist Cowl by Claire Borchardt in red.

The first project I finished this year was the Apiarist Cowl by Claire Borchardt. This was my first time needing a cable needle and I was very intimidated at first. As I worked through it, it became easier. Funny how that happens! lol. I really loved how this came out because I have been using it every day since. It is cute, warm, and soft as can be.

Musselburgh by Ysolda Teague in a gray.

The second item I finished was also a winter accessory, a Musselburgh by Ysolda Teague. This was an impulse make through and through. I had to put working on socks aside because I was unable to see the person I was making them for so I needed something else to work on. I ended up using fingering scraps from an old project. I love how this hat ended up coming out. I have not used it yet because I still need to block the hat, but I am waiting to have to block a few more things.

Life

This month was a really weird one to say the least. But, with that being said, I managed to make some pretty great memories. I went to a paint class with my friend and had a blast! I have not painted in a very long time so it was great to do something different and have some great conversation. I also somehow was able to order a new graphics card for my computer so once that arrives I can install it and hopefully finally finish my play through of Resident Evil Village and actually see what is going on. So, while January was really chaotic, some great things came out of it.

Sign Off 2020
Sign off, thanks for reading!

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Wrap Up

Wrap Up | December 2020

Hello and welcome to the last wrap up of 2020. I am going to make this one short and sweet since we are already in 2021, but I wanted to share the books I ended up finishing and mini reviews for each of them. I am going to be posting a whole year post either tomorrow or in the next few days. I currently have some rare time off so I am really taking this time to relax and not put pressure on myself. I will be uploading more regularly after the first week of January.


The IncarnationsThe Incarnations by Susan Barker
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This novel was just something outside of the genre it was labeled as. It is a thriller, fantasy, and historical fiction all mixed into one. This book follows a cab driver in Beijing and the story goes through time as you learn about his past lives as he does. Each life had its own chapter where you explored the lives of these two souls, the lives they lived varied quite a lot and they endured a ton as well (violence, sexual violence, and suicide to name a few). The writing itself was beautiful, and the way the author organized the book was perfect. At no point did I think the pacing was off or was bored. I was glued to this book when I was able to find time to pick it up. Another aspect I enjoyed was the fact that the author intertwined these stories with Chinese folklore, classic, and history.

View all my reviews

An Orchestra of MinoritiesAn Orchestra of Minorities by Chigozie Obioma
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

So, this is a very imaginative story. I really loved the premise of the tale and I really enjoyed that it was narrated by a guardian spirit called a chi. The writing itself was really wonderful and I think the author has a gift for sure. Unfortunately, this book was filled with female objectification and I can only hope that the authors purpose in this is to bring light to this. The main character cannot take any responsibility and is pig headed. He commits a horrible act who hurts someone he is meant to “love”. I put it into quotes because it isn’t love. The women in this novel are nothing more than their use to the main character. I had such high hopes for this novel, while I did not like this tale at all I will be checking out the authors other work because their writing itself was done very well.

View all my reviews

Royal HolidayRoyal Holiday by Jasmine Guillory
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This was a very cute read and a perfect little holiday book to read during December. When I picked this up I had no idea it was a series…oops! Either way I enjoyed it and the writing was good.

View all my reviews

Lovecraft CountryLovecraft Country by Matt Ruff
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A wonderful collections of historical horror/science fiction that show cases the “typical” horror and the horrors faced by American Americans.

View all my reviews

The Existence Of AmyThe Existence Of Amy by Lana Grace Riva
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A detailed review is to come, but this was a beautifully written novel that follows the main character through their personal struggles with mental health, specifically with OCD. I read this in a single day because the story itself was compelling, but also the writing was and methods used were perfect.

View all my reviews

December Stats: 9 books, 2868 pages, 8 fiction, 1 nonfiction, 3 ebooks, 1 hard cover, 5 softcover, 9 owned books, 1. 5 star, 6 4 star, 1 3 star, and 1 2 star.

What was your favorite or least favorite read of December or 2020 as a whole?

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Bullet Journal Jottings, Writing & More

Bullet Journal | November 2020

Hello and welcome! Today I am going to be sharing my monthly bullet journal spreads. This month I kept my layouts pretty much the same as previous months, but changed up the theme and colors used.


Supplies

  • Cabin images from Pixabay: #1 and #2
  • Tombow #946
  • Sharpie Pen
  • A5 Garden Slither Dot Grid Notebook from Olive and Archer
  • Scotch Adhesive Dot Roller
  • The Sacred Self-Care Oracle

My first few pages of the month are the introduction pages. I have really liked making these pages to give each month a definitive space. This month I felt like having a fall cabins as my theme so on the left I used a picture from pixabay of a cabin in the middle of the woods and mountains in the distance in the fall, all the trees are either a bright orange or red. I added a piece of ripped tan paper to add some dimension. On the right I I wrote November 2020 in script and highlighted in orange.

The next spread is just of a monthly calendar. I went really simple and plain with this months spread because I knew I would be adding a lot to it as the month progresses. I also highlighted the days of the week at the top of the calendar with the same orange color.

This month I am using a different oracle deck, the card that I pulled for the month was Sync with the moon and I added a quite from the guidebook that says, “I embrace my ebb and flow, my many phases, and the cycle of life. on a piece of brown paper. On the right hand page I added a description of each of the moon phases and when those moon phases are. The dates I added on a pice of brown paper to add some color to this page.

I wanted a page to keep track of my crochet projects I am working on so I just added the word Projects in script on top to fill in later on. On the right hand side I decided to add another picture of a cabin in the woods. This time it is still in the autumn, but this one is on a lake that reflects all the rich colors.

These two spreads I do every month. On the left I have my Month Ahead spread then one half is my tbr and the other is my monthly goals. I did not fill them in before these pictures are taken, but my TBR post is live if you wanted to see it. You can find that here: To Be Read | November 2020, Using a Prompt Generator. On the right hand side I added some shelve under the heading Books Read in script. Here I will place printouts of the books I read this month. I once again used the orange color to highlight the titles and subtitles.

Lastly, we have my weekly spreads, which I only did two weeks of because I am not 100% sure if I am going to be using them or not. But, I wanted to give myself some time to decide. My weekly spreads are the same as the past few months. Monday-Friday have their own boxes on the left side of the page, along with the weekend. On the right hand side of the page is open for me to add notes and memories. I used the orange color to highlight the day of the week and date.


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Bullet Journal Jottings, Writing & More

Bullet Journal | September 2020

Hello and welcome to my post where I am sharing my bullet journal spreads for September 2020. I don’t know about you, but September has really snuck up on me this year. I feel like it was the first week fo August and then I turned around and it was the last week already! Anyway, the only good news about time flying is creating some new spreads!


Items Used

  • Alphabet stamps
  • Scotch Adhesive Dot Roller
  • Tombow Brush Pen in color #912
  • Mechanical Pencil
  • Micron 01 in Black
  • Royalty Free Stock Photo: Pixabay
  • A5 Garden Slither Dot Grid Notebook from Olive and Archer
  • Amenti Oracle by Jennifer Sodini

Here is my dashboard for the month, as you can see by the picture on the right I am already feeling fall. I am not a huge fan of summer and the heat so I am one to always rush it out of the way. I really loved the picture of a walkway at a park with tall fall trees overhanging it and the addition of fog. I want to jump into the picture just like they do in Mary Poppins, I can feel the crisp air already! On the left I decided I would add a little script in the name of the month above the monthly calendar. I highlighted this page as well as all the others with a peachy orange color, Tombow Brush Pen in color #912.


On the left, I really wanted to keep the same month ahead spread I used over the past month. I really liked having a list of my TBR ready for me to work through as well as having a list of personal goals. I find it really motivating and allows me to focus my time instead of just wasting it. On the right I really enjoyed my bookshelf spread where I paste the picture of the books I have read throughout the month. Below you will find a picture from my August BUJO.

Here is my books read bookshelf for the month of August, this is not all the books I have read, but you can see I read You Were Born for This, The Secret River, Fever Dream (my favorite of the month), Smoke and Mirrors, The Comedy of Errors, G’morning, G’Night, After the Quake, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave, and The Hunger.

On the left you will see my oracle card for the month, this month I picked I spread joy. Which honestly, I love! I will say the image on the card a woman almost in a ballerina post on her toes with a few triangles behind her confuses me, but I am going to explore it more throughout the month. On the right hand side I am going to be doing a self care tracker. I have not really been taking great care of myself so I really want to make sure I leave time to care for myself in a wide range of methods. I put a square for each day of the month and when I do a form of self care I will color it in.

Last, but not last are my weekly spreads. I have been using these weekly spreads where I only put a mini calendar on the left page and leave room for notes and memory notes. On the right I have a rectangle for every day of the week, apart from the weekend, which I combine. This really works well for me because I have room to add appointments and such, but also lists to check off for the day.


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Bullet Journal Jottings, Writing & More

Bullet Journal | July 2020

Bullet Journal

Hello and welcome to my July bullet journal post. This month I changed a few things, but mainly kept things the same. But, I really enjoy the vibe I created for the month by adding a few pictures from a stock photo site and marker colors. I have really started to enjoy photographs in my spreads to set a mood as of late instead of doodles. Anyway, here is what I put together for July!


Items Used

Archer & Olive A5 Garden Sliter Dot Grid notebook

Tombow Dual Brush Pens 312

Tombow Dual Brush Pens 946

Sakura Pigma Micron Pens 01 and 05


On the left I placed my monthly calendar, I really loved highlighting the color green and orange in the picture of the cafe on the right hand page. I feel like it really pulled these two pages together. I picked the cafe because it looked so calming and relaxing with the color scheme of the various shades of green and pop of orange and tan. I also added The Reading Rush to my bujo because I am planning on taking part this year. I am so excited about the challenges this year, they are so fun in my opinion.

The next two pages house four different things. On the left I have my TBR for the month of July listed and a space to write my monthly goals. I also added a mini calendar for reference for the page on the right. On the right I have a vertical calendar were I will mark the days I read and on the right I am going to be adding my blog posts. I carried over the orange and green color by highlighting the titles and lines on the page.

These next two pages are a bit more plain. On the left I picked my oracle card for the month and I left the area around it blank so I have room to reelect upon it. This months card says “I Line in Truth”. On the accompanying page I added a picture of a brown doorway with a ton of plants because it goes well with the oracle card and the cafe picture I previously mentioned. Due to the fact that orange and brown are used a lot I decided to just add highlights with the green marker.

Now, this page on the left is my Books Read that I started using last month. In this spread I doodled a few bookshelves where I will then glue in the covers of the books I finish reading. I will share a picture of it competed below. On the right I added a picture of a window in a greenhouse while it is raining. It matches the green and orange theme perfectly and it is relaxing and a place I would love to read. I love plants and I would love to have a green house at some times in the future and I would love to sit inside during a rain storm and read.

Here is a picture from my bullet journal from last month (June 2020). On the left is a completed Books Read spread where I pasted pictures of the book covers. I really loved this so much more than the lists I was doing in the future. I ended up reading I’m Judging You, The Glass Hotel, Quichotte, Untamed, Prodigal Son, Full Dark No Stars, Twelfth Night, Anansi Boys, and A Darker Shade of Magic at the time of taking this picture.

Here is a picture f my weekly spread I started using last month and it worked so well. On the left I kept is mostly blank so I can add all the good things that happened that week, the only thing I added was a mini calendar and I highlighted the current week the spread is for. On the right I have six boxes each week day has its own and the weekend shares one. I decided to highlight the day of the week and date with the green I have used throughout this month.


What theme are you using this month?

What do you have planned for June?

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Bullet Journal Jottings, Writing & More

Bullet Journal | April 2020

Bullet Journal

Hello and welcome to my April Bujo post! This month is actually my last month in this notebook, which is a little sad since there are so many memories attached to it. But, I am kind of execited about my new notebook as well. It feels like a refreshing new start and I kind of wanted to pull that into this month’s spreads. My new notebook has a snake on the front so I wanted to bring the snakes to April as well. Now, without further ado, here is my bujo spreads for April.


Items Used

Archer & Olive Bujo

Tombow MONO drawingpen 05

Inspiration 

thebujophase on instagram


This is my magical readathon spread this time around. I left another page blank if I want to make a progress spread, but I have not made up my mind if I I want to or not. I did want to make a spread with the information for my career and optional training I am trying for. If you want to see the books I picked for this years OWLs, you can see that in my post,  To Be Read | April | #OWLsReathaon2020.

This is my monthly spread for the month. I am giving this new spread a try, using a method called Dutch Door. I decided to have my daily page count present on the peek through. I figured with the OWLs it would be fun.

On the other side of the Dutch Door I put my Blog Notes and my TBR list and a little print out of a snake. I am looking forward to using this during April, it is always fun to try something new.

This month I made my weekly layout a bit different this month. I wanted to give each day its space and its own to do list space. With working from home I really felt the need to keep everything in one place, I am hoping this spread and and cute snake can help me with that.


Do you enjoy snakes?

Are you participating in the OWLs? What are you reading for the OWLs? 

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Wrap Up

Wrap Up | February 2020

Wrap Up

Hello and welcome to a shocking good wrap up. I am surprised to say that I read 10 books this month. I have absolutely no idea how this has happened, but it has. This month has been a bit of a roller coaster when it has come to reading. I have read a book from literally every rating, 1-5. While I am not thrilled with reading 1 and 2 star books, it happens from time to time. The good news is I also read a 5 star book and a few great 4 star ones as well. Now, on to the mini reviews!


Read 2

Little ChildrenLittle Children by Tom Perrotta

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

So, now that I have finally finished this book, I can say that I generally enjoyed it. I think what stuck out to me the most about this book is that is a satire, but a sad one in my eyes. The characters that are talked about had different plans for their lives or they are slipping away in a manner. It really is a look into society and people and kept my interest for sure, I read it in four days.

Another thing that stood out to me is how this book is set up, you can tell the author did a great job laying out this novel. The characters seems very tangible and very likely to be real people in your own community. The characters seem to be facing issues that aren’t so unlike what you might see yourself or others you know deal with. The character development as well as the plot and how they interact with one another is well done. I will say, this book will also have to questioning the morals of others and society as well.

Overall, I enjoyed reading this book. I feel like it is very out of my normal read for me. I don’t always enjoy books like this, but this novel did it well. I ended up giving it a solid three stars and I can see other people really enjoying it if the description interests you. I am really happy that Reg picked it for me, it was a nice change of pace in my reading this month.

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The Starless SeaThe Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I am really glad that my friend, Reg, picked this to buddy read, but I am mad it took me so long to read/get to. I really enjoy the premise of this book very much and I can see why people love this book. I was really drawn in when I did read it, but I had a really hard tome actually getting myself to pick it up if that makes sense. I feel like this was due to my mood and I think I will want to reread this book in the future when I am more in the mood for a book like this.

Overall, it was a good book and I looking forward to a reread down the road.

View all my reviews


CujoCujo by Stephen King

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was both a very scary read and a heart breaking read. While Cujo is for sure a book that is well known by many and I was familiar with the idea of this story due to its pop culture relevance, this book turned out to be so much more. This book turned out to be more than one story and more dynamic than I thought it was going to be. I really thought it was just going to be a killer dog, but it explored so much more. I don’t want to say too much and ruin it for others, but it was a wild ride of a book.

View all my reviews


Alexander HamiltonAlexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was such a wonderfully written book. Ron Chernow did a wonderful job at exploring the life of one of America’s. founding father’s, but also explored his family and political climate of the young nation. I felt like his biography was fair look at Hamilton, showing both his faults and good characteristics, it was realistic and didn’t just idealize the man. I throughly enjoyed learning more about his early life, which isn’t covered much in my previous reading.

Overall, I can see why this book inspired the popular play. It is a very exciting story of an individual during a very pivotal point in America’s history. Chernow does a wonderful job mixing scholarship with a plethora of sources, but also kept the book entertaining and not bogged down by facts and statistics.

View all my reviews


OthelloOthello by William Shakespeare

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

So, coming into this month I felt both better and a bit worried about reading Othello. I felt a bit more at ease because I really enjoyed a Midsummer Night’s Dream, but I remember reading Othello and really disliking it. So, I really saw things going either way.

I have to say, the start of this book kind of made me feel like The Count of Monte Cristo. It starts off with a man feeling wronged by not being promoted and is newly married. Very much sounded very familiar, which for Othello is a good thing because I loved The Count of Monte Cristo. Another work I made a connection to is A Midsummer Night’s Dream. The father in A Midsummer Night’s Dream was so upset and would not accept his daughter marrying for love and was so dramatic about it. The same happened in this story pretty much, which was kind of annoying. Only two books into this challenge and already recycling characters in a way.

More of my review at 2020 Shakespeare Challenge | February


Middle Mark Books 2

The Langoliers by Stephen King, rating: 5 of 5 stars

God Country by Donny Cates, rating: 2 of 5 stars

Ducks, Newburyport by Lucy Ellman, rating: 1 of 5 stars

The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren, rating: 3 of 5 stars

No One Is Too Small to Make a Difference by Greta Thunberg, rating: 4 of 5 stars


Beat the Backlist 2

Start of 2020: 51

Current: 27


Reading Stats

  • Number of Books: 10
  • Number of Pages: 4,4466
  • Fiction: 8
  • Nonfiction: 2
  • DNF’ed: 1
  • Ebook: 0
  • Audiobook: 0
  • Paperback: 8
  • Hardcover: 2
  • Library: 3
  • Owned: 7
  • 5 Stars: 1
  • 4 Stars: 4
  • 3 Stars: 3
  • 2 Stars: 1
  • 1 Star: 1

    What was your favorite read of the month?

    What was the last book you read in January?

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Bullet Journal Jottings, Writing & More

Bullet Journal | January 2020

Bullet JournalHello and welcome to another Bujo setup post! I am very excited to show you this months spreads for two reasons. I have cut a lot of the spreads I normally had and I added a few for the new year. Some of the cuts include my blog planning. I totally removed those pages and I now use a different planner/travelers notebook. As for the other spreads, expect to see a little consolidation and a few new layouts to mark the new year! On to a look into my bullet journal!


Since I am using the same notebook as I transition into the new year I decided to add this artwork from Shayda Campbell. I feel like this really separates and marks the new year and I thought it was important to celebrate it.

This year I wanted to add a little layout that would highlight my favorite book of the month. I thought it would be helpful and fun to reflect upon it at the end of the year. On the other page I have a Read 5, Buy 1 layout for the new year. I am excited to get back to this. But, this time I am making sure I only count books from my own shelves as thee reads, not library books this time around. So, because of this the spread is a little smaller.

This page I added a little doodle and then I also added a page with 12 books to showcase my 2020 Shakespeare Challenge, if you don’t know about it here is the post,  Blogmas | Goals | 2020 Shakespeare Challenge. I wanted to mark the play that is picked each month because it is a year long journey and I would love to see it grow. I also want to add a doodle for each play as I read them.  I thought it would be fun.

I have been working on a temperature blanket since the summer and I wanted to track my progress in my bullet journal. So, I added the month on the top and the day on the side and I am adding a dot for the days I have crocheted. I did not fill it out before taking the picture, but I will admit I am a little behind. On the right I decided to have a meal prep idea bank for when I am stumped on what to make for my meals. These are all ones I love so I will always be happy with any of them.

I picked this up from craftyenginerd, this year I wanted a pysical way to track when bills are paid. I will say I have never paid anything late, but sometimes I pay so early I freaekout and think I didn’t pay. So this will help me not freak out and rush and sign into my accounts. I also want to do a monthly one, I was thinking of adding one inspired by thatbujokid. But, I have not done it yet. I am still up in the air about it.

Here we are getting into the monthly spreads. On the left I have my January dashboard and mini calendar. On the right I added a place to add an affirmation that I can look back on. At the time I did not add one because I wanted to take the time and add a meaningful one. These are both from Shayda Campbell. The one on the right I took her other artwork and used it to complete the spread. I will say this month I didn’t use a ruler and I am kinda feeling the messy lines.

This month I really wanted to continue with the messy lines and the brown paper so I brought it through to me book tracker and to be read. These are spreads I have every month so I won’t go to much into it, but if you want to check out my TBR you can see that here: To Be Read | January 2020.

My weekly layouts are very similar to what they have been the last few months, but I added a tracker into my weekly spreads instead of just its own page. I really wanted to downsize my monthly spreads and get rid of stuff that was fluff and condense everything if I could. This layout has really been working for me and I have loved using it.


QOTD: How to do keep your schedule organized? Do you use a planner, bullet journal, or a monthly calendar? 

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Hauls & Unboxings

Unboxing | Coffee and a Classic September 2019

Unboxing

Hello and welcome to another unboxing of Coffee and a Classic! This month is something extra special since it is Halloween related. I know I am posting this a tad bit late, but better late than never! Anyway, I was so excited about this months pick because I have read the main tale that was sent out, and loved, but I did not read the “Other Stories” so I am excited to find more stories I adore. Anyway, on to the unboxing.


Here is the goodness I saw when I opened the box up. I do love that they really individualize every box to totally surround the box. It really adds to the experience for me.

Here are some of the goodies in this months box. I have to say I was so thankful to get the book light. Mine was starting to act funny and I was ready to go out and get a new one when my next paycheck came in, this could not have been more perfect timing! Also, this months bookmark is so adorable, I started using it right away. Plus, I can always find my books in the dark now with this glow in the dark potion.

I really loved the story of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, talking about the dual sides to each person and humanity as a whole. It is just as much as a monster story as much as a story about humans, which makes it even more eerie. Even though I really enjoyed reading this story, I for some reason have not picked up another one by this author so I am happy to see the & Other Stories on the cover of this beautiful edition.

Now, I think this is my favorite thing I have gotten from Coffee and Classic since being a subscriber. I took this pillow case and stuffed it full of teddy bear stuffing and put it right now my bed. It is a perfect little Halloween decorate as well as a literary one and that just makes my halloween book loving heart happy. Also, it is a pun and I LOVE puns.


Have you read this book?

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