Top Ten Tuesday|| Books I meant to read in 2017.


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

Top ten books I meant to read in 2017, but didn’t get to.


FYI, it’s been over seven months since I’ve done a TTT post! I want to try to do more this year. Anyway, onto the topic for today. Ten books that I meant to read in 2017, but didn’t get to. There are SO MANY books that I wanted to read in 2017, but didn’t get a chance to. Narrowing this down to just ten is going to be pretty difficult, but let’s get started!


The Hidden Oracle by Rick Riordan
The Afterlife of Holly Chase by Cynthia Hand
When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon
The Crown’s Fate by Evelyn Skye
Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo


To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han
Caraval by Stephanie Garber
Carve the Mark by Veronica Roth
Eliza and Her Monsters by Francesca Zappia
The Diabolic by S.J. Kincaid

Some of these I have been wanting to read for so long, like Six of Crows. I’ve had it since it’s release in 2015 and have yet to get to it. UGHH. I’ve also owned almost all of these since their release dates. Hopefully this year! I actually have a buddy read planned in February for When Dimple Met Rishi, so that’s good. I really hope to read all of these this year.

What are some books that you mean to read in 2017, but didn’t get the chance to read? Have you read any of the ones on my list? Feel free to link me to your TTT posts, so I can check them out! 🙂

In case you missed it;
Travel|| Lakeland…again.
Phot A Day|| January 1-4
2018 Reading Goals.

I hope you have a great day!


Travel|| Lakeland…again.



So I did a trip to Lakeland once again (told you that I love this city!), but this time with my younger sister, mom, and aunt. We only went for a couple days, but it was still pretty fun. We went the weekend of New Year’s.


View from the window in our hotel room. The hotel was pretty nice and we were right in the middle of Lakeside Village, which was nice. Lakeside Village has a lot of shops and restaurants in it. It’s like a little shopping center type place, but outdoors. My younger sister and I spent most of the time there.

The first night we went to dinner at Glory Days. We were meeting up with my mom’s and aunt’s cousin. That was pretty fun. I didn’t take any pictures of that. After we ate dinner, we went to a bar for a little bit. We didn’t stay out long though. We were all pretty tired since we went to Lakeland straight after work. The next day we went to breakfast and then back to the hotel. My mom had to work during the day, but once the shops opened in Lakeside Village, my younger sister (Stephanie) and I went down there to walk around.




Fountain in the middle of Lakeside Village. I really wanted to go to Rocket Fizz, so I could get Andy some soda and to get myself salt water taffy. He loves all the different flavored sodas they sell and we don’t have a Rocket Fizz near us. We always make sure to stop there every time we go to Lakeland. My sister ended up getting some sodas too.


Does anyone remember Whistle Pops?! Rocket Fizz had Whistle Pops, so my sister got some. We used to get these ALL THE TIME when we were kids. I love that Rocket Fizz has a bunch of older candies from back then. It’s hard not to buy everything, haha.




My sister and I went to Books-A-Million and I managed to leave the store without buying a single book! Left is a picture of us in some masks they had there. She’s the dinosaur and I’m the cat (of course). 😛 There was also a frozen yogurt shop inside Books-A-Million, so we got some. I haven’t had froyo in so long, because the place by my house closed down.




On the way to Lakeland, we drive through this little town called Lake Wales (which I love that town too, haha) and they had this bar we seen called “Y’all Come Back Saloon”, so we decided to check it out after hanging out in Lakeside Village. My mom and aunt went with. It was such a fun bar. It was defintely a dive bar (which we love) and super country (which we love) and cheap beer (which we love), haha. It was perfect for us and it was a lot of fun. My sister and I played pool for a little while. I suck at pool and I also think it’s kind of boring, lol. Back home my mom, aunt, and older sister play. They are all on pool teams too, but I don’t like it. LOL.


My mom and aunt drank quite a bit, so they went back to the hotel once we got back to Lakeland. My sister and I decided to go back to Lakeside Village and go to Brass Tap. We both got flights and pizza. I loved all the beer that I got. My sister liked three of the four that she picked up out. I love craft beer and of course pizza!




After we drank and ate pizza we walked around and ended up at Smallcakes.  They were on Cupcake Wars on Food Network! I ended up buying cupcakes and we ate them for breakfast on Sunday. THEY WERE SO GOOD!




We were originally supposed to stay in Lakeland until Monday (January 1st), but ended up coming back a day early. These are some pictures I took on the way back home from the car.

Even though we came home a day early, it was still pretty fun. Especially getting to hangout with my younger sister. She’s a truck driver with her boyfriend, so I don’t get to see her that often. I am always down for a trip to Lakeland and Lake Wales. I think there will be another one in the next month or two.

I think I am going to do a few blog posts with the books I read last year with their ratings. Example: a blog post with all of my five star reads in 2017, four star reads, etc. I actually had quite a bit of five star reads, so it’ll be cool showing them all in one post. That may be coming at some point this week or early next week.

In case you missed it;
Phot A Day|| January 1-4
2018 Reading Goals.
New Year, New Blog.

I hope you have a great day!


Phot A Day|| January 1-4.



I’ve been taking part in monthly photo a day challenges on my Instagram account (heyyitsashley) and I’ve been having a lot of fun with them (when I don’t fall behind on pictures). I figured I would also cross post them to my blog as well. I think for the purpose of blogging, I will post 3-4 per blog post that I do throughout the month. That way I am not spamming my blog with a million photo a day posts back to back. You can follow me on Instagram (linked above) if you want to see them daily though! Some of these pictures will be taken with my Nikon. There will also be some taken  with my iPhone X.

Days 1-4 of January.


Day 1: I am here.
Instagram Caption: playing exploding kittens with the younger sister and mom. 🐱💥
Camera: iPhone.

The hubby and I were gifted Exploding Kittens from his family for Christmas and my mom and sisters have been playing it. It’s pretty fun. My mom probably loves it more than everyone else and gets angry if she loses, haha.


Day 2: Yellow.
Instagram Caption: 💛💛
Camera: Nikon.

Just a random picture of some little flowers. A lot of people consider these weeds, but I think they are cute.


Day 3: On the floor.
Instagram Caption: “We all live day to day completely oblivious to the fact that we’re a part of a much larger and stranger reality than we can possibly imagine.” 📖
Camera: iPhone.

Can you guess the book I quoted in my caption? If not, it’s Dark Matter by Blake Crouch. I love that book so much and this is hands down one of my favorite quotes. I took the picture of my reflection on a door I walked past outside my work.


Day 4: Plain.
Instagram Caption: 🐚💙 || i honestly had no idea what to take a picture of today for this topic, so here’s a pretty shell. 🤷🏻‍♀️
Camera: iPhone.

Like my caption said, I had no idea what to take a picture of for that topic. So I posted a picture of this shell that I took a months ago, but never posted.

BONUS PICTURES, because they are too cute not to share.


Clearly little Leaf didn’t make it to midnight. 😛

In case you  missed it;
2018 Reading Goals.
New Year, New Blog.

I hope you have a great day!


2018 Reading Goals.



I decided to come up with a list of things I hope to accomplish or do more of in 2018 as far as reading/books go. I will have another list for regular life things later, but this one will be about books!

2018 Goodreads challenge. My Goodreads reading challenge is to read 60 books. In 2017 I read 59 books and listened to 8 audiobooks. Since I was able to read 59 books in 2017, I decided to increase my Goodreads challenge to 60. I think it’s doable, especially since 2017 I didn’t read nearly as much as I have in the past due to being busy and quite a few reading/blogging slumps. I am not going to count audiobooks this year toward my Goodreads challenge, but I will still list all the audiobooks that I listen to in recaps or my 2018 books I read page here. So that means my main goal is to read 60 books myself and audiobooks don’t count toward that total.

Read more adult books. I love YA, I always gravitate more toward YA, but I have so many adult books that I’ve been neglecting. I want to get to more of those books and finally read some of the ones that I’ve had for awhile and just never got to. Don’t get me wrong, I still and forever will love YA, but it’ll be nice to branch out more. I enjoy adult books as well, I just never read as many.

Read my unfinished series. I have started a lot of book series over the last few years and haven’t finished them. I want to finish the completed series and catch up to the newest books in the uncompleted series that I’ve started. In 2017 I gravitated toward more standalone books, because I felt so guilty starting a new series when I have so many that I haven’t finished yet. So I want to get to more of those, so I can finally start some new series that I’ve been dying to read. I used to read an entire series (if it was an older one and had all or most books out) before I even started a new book/series. I need to do that again, which brings me to my next thing.

Binge read any new series I start. If I start a new book series and it has more than one book out, I want to binge all the available books instead of putting them on hold and reading other books. Before I started my blog in 2015, I used to do that like I mentioned above. I never even bought a new book until I finished the one I was currently reading; unless it was a series that I was loving, then I bought all the books and binge read them all. Not going to lie, as much as I love blogging and everyone I met here, it’s kind of changed my reading habits A LOT. Now I’m drowning in unread books and unfinished series.

Continue to buy less books. In 2017 I did a pretty good job with not buying so many books. I used my library a lot more if I was dying to read something that I didn’t have. It helped me with finally reading more of the older books I’ve had on my shelf’s that I hadn’t read yet and kept neglecting due to buying more and more books every month. So I want to continue to not buy so many new books and continue to read my older books.

Get rid of books I don’t like/plan to reread. I’m out of bookshelf space. I continue to run out of bookshelf space. #bookwormproblems. I want to put an empty box next to my bookshelf, so if I don’t like a book or it was just “okay” and I don’t have any real connection to it, I plan to drop it in the empty box instead of putting it back on my shelf. Once the box is filled, I will donate the books or give them away and continue again. I want to try to own books I REALLY love versus having a ton of books taking up space that could be used for new books.

Don’t fall behind on ARCs. I read a lot of ARCs in 2017. Probably more than my previous years of blogging. It was part of my plan for buying less books in 2017. If I got them from publishers, I would be able to read the books I wanted, blog about them, and if I truly loved them I would buy the finished copies for myself when they got released. It worked great, but toward the end of the year with the holidays and blogging slump, I fell a bit behind. I am playing catch up now and although I don’t plan to request as much this year, I don’t want to get behind on any that I do request.

These are pretty much my main focus for 2018 as far as reading and books go. I also want to have fun with this, so I am not putting any pressure whatsoever, because then that just sucks the fun out of it and I’ll not want to try anymore. I don’t really have any set goals for blogging, because I struggled in 2017 with it becoming a chore rather than fun. So I am going to continue to post the content that I want to post (whether books, photography, travel, etc.) and post when I want to. I don’t want to feel like I have to or it’ll again not feel fun to me and I may not be around much again. I also have a ton of things happening in 2018 that I haven’t talked about yet, so that may take up some of my time as well. It’s all about balance and I have to find something that works for me.

What are some goals you have for this year? Feel free to link me to your posts if you have one! 

In case you missed it;
New Year, New Blog.
Recap|| December.
Random|| Christmas & Other Things.

I hope you have a great day!


New Year, New Blog.


Happy New Year!

** You may have seen this exact same blog post below back in November, but I am posting it again just in case you missed it and because it’s the new year and I planned to make some new changes to my blog, which I have been trying to incorporate more toward the end of 2017. I will also have another post coming soon of some goals that I hope to accomplish in the new year as far as blogging, reading, and regular life goes. I am going to also post my Goodreads 2017 challenge stats, fave books I read in 2017, and my challenge for 2018. So, be on the look out for those posts coming this week. **

I’ve been thinking a lot about blogging, the blogosphere, and especially my blog and I decided to make some changes and I really hope you stick around for them! Continue reading this post to learn more about it.

I had originally created a blog called “still pixels” for my photography (side note; I am not a pro-photographer or anything like that. I just like taking pictures and sometimes they come out pretty awesome.) and I have an Instagram account to go along with it as well. I like everything I did over there for the two weeks I was doing it, but I think juggling two blogs is difficult; especially when I neglect this one A LOT over the last year. With a new year here, I want to make some changes to the content on this blog.

With that being said, I am going to slowly make this blog be about all the things I like and not only books. It’ll also be where I talk about random things happening in my life. A little journal (ish) in a way. Also, kind of like how I was doing with my random picture posts that I’ve done over the last couple years, but there will be more of it; not just once in awhile.

I migrated some of the things that I posted on Still Pixels over to this blog as well, because I liked the content that I made and posted there; like the headers that I made from the pictures that I took. I’m not going to delete Still Pixels, because in the future I may want to try again with that blog. I’ll be leaving it active, but not updating it (for now). I’m leaving my Instagram account for Still Pixels (stillpixels_) active too, but not updating that right now either. I put that account to private for now.

I will still be updating about books here, but books may not necessarily be my main focus. I don’t plan to rename this blog or anything, because “Socially Awkward Bookworm” still portrays who I am as a person. I am still (and forever) socially awkward and I am still (and forever) a bookworm. There’s more to me than just books though, so I want to talk about and share those things too. I love blogging, but sometimes not always about books and I have no idea where else to put the things in my head.

I think that’s another reason why I’ve been pretty MIA in the blogosphere over the last year and a half. I don’t always want to blog about books, but this blog has always been centered around books and I felt like maybe it would have been wrong in some way to post other things besides book related things and the casual picture update. So I’ve slowly stepped away, I guess you can say. I don’t want to do that though, because I love having a place to put my thoughts and my pictures (other than Instagram).

BUT! With a new year (HELLO, 2018!) here I decided I am going to embrace it and post whatever I want to post about; whether that be books, music, tv shows, fandoms, traveling, photography, or anything else happening in my life. This will be a space for all of that and more. In life if things aren’t working out for you anymore, you change it, or leave it behind. I don’t want to do anything in life that isn’t going to make me happy.

“I’m so focused on my own energy right now and people misinterpret that. I’m not being distant. I’m just gravitating to the vibes that suit me.”

I want to live a life where I am happy with all of my choices and what I am doing and I want my blog to reflect that too. I want to live my life as stress free as humanly possible and if that means having to let some things or people go, then so be it. Life is too short to be anything other than happy and who you want to be. Life is too short to not have the things you want and do the things that you want to do. I’m all about good vibes and that’s the way I want to live my life always.

“I’m learning to be more calm and patient these days. Just can’t afford to let anything or anyone steal my happiness.”

“The more in harmony you are with the flow of your own existence, the more magical life becomes.”

There will still be TONS of talk about books too; no one will ever be able to take away my love for books and the need to talk about them. You’ll just get to see more into my life as well and that could be pretty fun. 🙂


Recap|| December.



Is 2018 really just a few days away? 2017 has been a pretty good year. I was able to do some pretty cool and fun things this year that I am forever grateful for. I married my best friend this year and we celebrated ten years of being together this year too. I got to travel to some places that I’ve really wanted to go (Washington DC, Virginia, NYC, South of the Border in South Carolina). I still need to do my honeymoon post ASAP. I got to go to BookCon and meet some blogger friends in NYC! I got to hangout with old friends in Lakeland and we discovered our love for that city and possibly a new future for us. I got a new kitten (Leaf) and she’s perfect even when she’s crazy.

I’m actually really looking forward to 2018, because this year the hubby and I have been trying to work toward a better future for us and in 2018 we can hopefully start the process of putting some kind of long term plans into play. Kind of weird thinking about long term though, because I’m a go with the flow kind of person. Day to day. Whatever happens, happens  It is what it is. I’m that kind of person and I’ve no doubt been a lot happier living that way. I think this will be good though. I can still live that way and also have a backup plan. I guess this is adulting? 😛

2018 is going to be a pretty busy year for us, but more on that another time. You’re here for my December recap post of the books I read this month, so let’s get into that! You can find a full list of these books and the other books I read this year over here. All will be linked to Goodreads below and I will also link to individual blog posts for them if I did a review.

DNF Books:
These are the books that I read throughout the month of December, but did not finish them because I just couldn’t get into them.


Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor 
I checked the audiobook from my library and I got over halfway through it, but I just could not get into it. It was way too boring for me and most of the time I was just confused or really didn’t care what was happening. I wanted so badly to love this book, because I’ve heard so many great things about it. I’m sad that it wasn’t for me.

Physically Read Books:
These are the books that I read by myself (not audiobooks) throughout the month of December.


TMI by Patty Blount – 3 out of 5 stars.
TMI was pretty good and I read through it pretty quickly. It got a little weird toward the end, but it was enjoyable. I guessed who Ryder West was early on. It wasn’t too memorable for me, but still a decent read.

Want to Go Private? by Sarah Darer Littman – 4 out of 5 stars.
Want to Go Private? is a really important book. It deals with social media and meeting people in person that you’ve talked to online. A lot of kids have social media today, instant messages, texts, etc. and it’s easy to fall prey to these online predators and fall into these dangerous situations. It was a really good book and worth the read, especially for younger kids first getting into the online world.

Being Fishkill by Ruth Lehrer – 5 out of 5 stars – review.
Being Fishkill was one of my favorite books that I read this year. I seen Jeff Zentner talking about how amazing it was, so I had to check it out. He was 100% on point with this opinions. This book was so emotional! I cried quite a few times. I still think about this story and the characters a lot. I highly recommend reading it.

Without Merit by Colleen Hoover- 4 out of 5 stars.
Colleen Hoover has quickly became one of my favorite authors. I always fly through her books and always enjoy them. Same with Without Merit. I will say though that it wasn’t my favorite CoHo book. It was a lot different than the books that she usually writes. I found myself a little bored at times and sometimes it didn’t really feel like a whole lot was going on. I still really liked it and I’m glad I read it.

These are the books that I listened to the audio versions throughout the month of December.


Vanguard by Ann Aguirre – 5 out of 5 stars.
I’ve said this many times, but the Razorland series is one of my favorites. The third book came out in 2013 and I honestly thought that was it. Then I heard about Vanguard and I pretty much freaked out! I was so stoked and I couldn’t wait to read it. I did an audiobook reread of the entire series last month, so I decided to check out Vanguard in audiobook as well. I loved everything about Vanguard. It was everything I hoped it would be and more. I’m still fangirling inside about how amazing this book was and series.

Currently Reading Books:
These are the books that I started to read in the month of December, but didn’t get a chance to finish them yet.


Long Way Home by Katie McGarry

Finally reading Long Way Home. I’ve been trying to read this for months, to be honest. I kept putting it off month after month. I am finally reading it and of course really enjoying it. I love the Thunder Road series so much.

I think for January I’m going to try to read a bunch of the ARCs I have and need to catch up on. I also want to try to read more books that are on my list of unfinished series (book series that I started but never finished/caught up on – there’s 20+ series). I’ll have a blog post coming soon of some reading/book goals for 2018 and it mentions more on this. After work today I am off to Lakeland for New Year’s weekend. It really sucks the hubby can’t come along since he has to work 😦 but hopefully it’ll still be fun.

In case you missed it;
Random|| Christmas & Other Things.
Book Haul|| December.
Travel|| Lakeland.

I hope you have a great day, weekend, and New Year’s!


Twitter: whoa_itsashley
Instagram: heyyitsashley
Bookstagram: foreverbookish_

Random|| Christmas & Other Things.



Today I am going to do a one of my random picture updates and it is going to pretty image heavy, because it’s been awhile since I’ve done one of these. It’ll most likely be my last one of these posts before the end of the year. There is almost 50 pictures in this post, so be prepared. 😛 I think I’ll start with Christmas pictures since Christmas just happened.


There was a couple of days where it got pretty cold in Florida, which I was stoked about, because I was able to wear my Christmas sweaters and drink hot chocolate all the time to warm me up. I’ve had my Real Friends Christmas sweater (left) for a few years, but I’ve only worn it a handful of times LOL.


In the middle of December we went to this little event (Fantasy of Lights) where you drive through and see all these different Christmas lights and decorations. That was pretty neat and there were a ton of different cool lights. It was hard to take pictures in the car though, especially when you had a line of cars behind you LOL. I go ta few though.


My three kitties (there will be more cat pictures 😛 ). Left: Leaf. Middle: October. Right: ColbyJack. Here are a few Christmas ones with them near or under the Christmas tree. Sometimes they were good to it and other times they attacked the tree, climbed the tree, and broke branches. UGHH.


OH HEY!!! It’s Santa Dax. He’s pretty stoked about the Santa hat this year. Last year he wasn’t thrilled that I put it on him. He’s too cute, I can hardly stand it. Haha.


Christmas lights. I was bored, so I took some Christmas light pictures. No way was Dax and October taking part in this though, lol. ColbyJack was whatever about it, but you can tell he hated it. Leaf was fascinated by the lights. I had to stop though, because she was trying to eat them.


Hot chocolate and Christmas cookies. On Christmas Eve Eve ( 😛 ) we made it a family night. We decorated cookies, drank hot chocolate, and played board games and trivia games. It was pretty fun. We also let my niece and nephew open one of their gifts. On Christmas Eve we had our Christmas dinner and played more board games. It was pretty fun. I’ve been battling a cold for like almost two weeks now though, so that kind of sucked. I still tried to have fun though. Sorry to any of my family members that end up sick because of me though!


We may have all went a little overboard with presents this year; there is presents for nine people under here though, lol. I got a ton of cool gifts from my family and the hubby’s family too. The hubby got me the other two Home Alone Funkos, which I was stoked about and a wireless charging pad for my iPhone X. He also got me the candy cane TOMS, which are awesome. They are glittery and sparkly.


Pictures do not do them justice AT ALL. They shine and sparkle in the light, which I am obsessed with haha. Probably my new favorite pair of TOMS. I have so many pairs. I think I only wear TOMS, sandals, and occasionally I’ll wear Converse.



The Santa Claus headband. I lived with this thing on my head the entire Christmas weekend, LOL. My sister got a snowman one and then we got our mom, her kids, and Andy Santa hats. They didn’t wear theirs, but I did until Christmas ended LOL.


YOU GUYS!! It was Leaf’s first Christmas. She totally took claim of all the prezzies, so her brothers and sister couldn’t have any. LOL! In the bottom right picture you can see where she took claim to the stocking and let ColbyJack have the dog toys HAHA. Eventually she backed off for a couple minutes and the others got to check out what Santa brought them.



October (top left) and Dax (bottom right) were pretty done with the presents though. They seen what they got and ran off. I think ColbyJack (bottom left) and Leaf (top right) were the only ones that stuck around and played with some of them.


Last Christmas picture. My younger sister got me a Dobby bookend, which is totally freaking cool! I can’t wait to rearrange my Harry Potter bookshelf, so I can include it on there! He’s so cute.



You should probably already know by now that I live for sunsets and taking pictures of them. I was able to catch some pretty cool ones in the month of December. The purple and pink one was amazing though. I took that on my way home from work right in front of Hard Rock. It’s not easy getting pictures of sunsets in this city, so many cars and buildings. And now all the furbaby pictures…


MY HEART IS MELTING. I love when they cuddle together. It’s one of my favorite things and Leaf definitely likes to cuddle. ColbyJack only really likes Dax (he tolerates October and Leaf). She’s growing so fast though! She was a little bigger than my hand when we got her and now she’s almost the size of October! She’s only like 6-7 months old. She can be a monster, but she’s also really cute and sweet…


SEE? She loves sleeping by us or on us. When we first got her, we always slept by her because we didn’t want her to be alone because she was so tiny and because we were bottle feeding her. So we would wake up in the middle of the night to feed her if she was crying, so I think maybe that’s why she’s so close to use. A lot closer than our other kitties. Also ColbyJack does lay with me sometimes, especially when I’m sick…



And some other random pictures of my furbabies. These are the last ones, haha. Furbaby overload, but I love them so much and I can’t help it. 😛


They finally made a Sora Funko, so I got him in December. I was so stoked to get him and that he has a little keyblade. I need to get my hands on all the other Kingdom Hearts Funkos, ASAP! I’ve been having fun replaying all the games again and I can’t wait until the release of the new game at the end of 2018.


Last but not least, I move things around and here is a picture of my bookshelves. They are a complete mess now though. This was before they became a wreck. I need to clean up and put a ton of things away and make them look nice again.

That’s all for this post. I have a ton of things to do today before my weekend trip to Lakeland (again, told you I love it there). This time I’m going with my sisters, mom, and aunt. It sucks that the hubby can’t come with. 😦 But hopefully it’ll still be a lot of fun. I’ll have my wrap up posted hopefully tomorrow.

In case you missed it;
Book Haul|| December.
Travel|| Lakeland.
Thoughts|| Being Fishkill.

I hope you have a great day!