Random|| Life Update.

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“everyone blooms in their own time; some far ahead, some far behind; so wherever you are, don’t worry, you’re gonna be fine, fine, fine; cause everyone blooms in their own time”


Hey!

I am kind of surprised my last post was May 1st. I’ve just been busy and distracted a lot this month. My cousin (& bff) has been in town visiting. I was able to show her my house and also around Lakeland a little bit. The flower picture above is one that I took at Lake Mirror when I showed my cousin the garden (Hollis Garden) there. I decided to go to my mom’s house for a week with my cousin. We didn’t do anything there besides home stuff, because everything is still crazy and shutdown because of the virus. We did get to hangout in the pool though. It was nice hanging with my family even if it was all spent at home. I missed my family so much, so I think this was much needed.

As far as reading goes, I finished one book so far this month which is a bummer. I wish it would have been more, but at least there’s still about two weeks left in the month. Maybe things will change. The book that I finished was Catfishing on Catnet by Naomi Kritzer. I flew through the first half of this book, but then my family was visiting and I stopped reading. I really liked it though and can’t wait for the sequel. I am currently reading two books, Working Stiff by Judy Melinek and I am also reading The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton again, because I love this book so much and can’t help but reread it all the time lol.

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Aside from these things, my life has pretty much been the same. I am still playing ridiculous amounts of Animal Crossing, watching all the seasons of RuPaul’s Drag Race, and trying to fit some kind of reading in. I guess I can’t complain too much. I am just ready for things to get back to a more normal normal? They have been opening things here in my area now, but I’m still too paranoid to really go do too much too soon. It took a lot for me to even leave my house to go stay with my family for a week.

I am back at home (just got back last night) and hope to catch up with you guys soon! I read some of your your posts from my phone when I was gone, but I forgot my laptop at home. I don’t know why I didn’t think to bring it and really wish I had! Since I just got back home from visiting my family, I need some time to just chill at my own house with the furbabies and husband. Being social for a week straight is also kind of exhausting for me. I need time to just be by myself again. I’ll catch up with your posts and comments within the next few days.

In case you missed it:
Wrap Up|| April.
Book Haul|| April.
Book Tag|| Goodreads.

I hope you have a great day!
ashleyblack

Stuck…where do I go from here?

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“stop holding on, if it’s holding you back, then let it go; your grass will always be the greenest if you let it grow” 🌼🐝🌿


This is one of my favorite pictures that I’ve taken recently. You can find cool picture opportunities anywhere! Example: I took this photo in the garden section of Home Depot, lol. I’m going to do a series of picture posts; I have a ton of pictures to share. I went to upload them all into one post and it ended up being 60+ pictures, so I decided I’ll break it up into multiple posts instead. I’m going to start working on those this week, so that by next week I can start posting them.

Other than these posts, I’ve been feeling a little bit stuck in terms of my blog, my bookstagram, and essentially my life as well.  I am trying to get back into bookstagram, but I have no idea what kind of pictures to post and what theme I want to go for. When I first started my bookstagram I had so many ideas and I was having a lot of fun with it. I guess since I haven’t really been doing it consistently over the last couple years, I forgot and lost my creativity with that. With the blog, I’m not sure what kind of content I should post. It’s kind of frustrating!

I think when I start to feel uninspired is usually when I quit things and I don’t want to quit blogging! I actually really love it and love all the friends I’ve made and continue to make every day, but sometimes I feel like I’m boring everyone with the same content over and over again. You know, it’s not even just blogging and bookstagram. I have an online journal that I write about things happening in my life (it’s more of personal journal and I’ve been using it since I was in high school) and I really have nothing to write in my own personal journal either.

I think it has more to do with how I’ve been feeling about myself lately. I have all of these negative feelings (and thoughts) about myself over the last 3-4 months that I’ve never had before. It’s so weird experiencing this because I used to always think so highly of myself. Now I question whether that was even real or if I was pretending/lying to myself all my life. The end months of 2019 messed with my self-confidence and shattered who I thought I was. I only feel like a fraction of who I was before and that scares me! I want to get back to my old self, where I was always positive and always happy. I want to get out of this negative headspace. Some days I think I am finally out of it and then others I feel right back in there. Sigh.

I’ve been obsessed with this song “Hangnail” by Rationale. I feel like I relate to it a lot lately. I just feel down about myself and my life these days. Here’s the song if you’re interested: https://youtu.be/O9sTYRUkSHc

“I wish I had this poetic poise, an articulate finesse.
I’m too clumsy and the words escape me.
I’m hazy and any passing thought can displace me.”

I think this negative headspace; these thoughts and these feelings are pouring into everything in my life, including blogging. I think this is where so much of my “stuck” feeling comes from too. Maybe I can Google search some ideas for both bookstagram and my blog and see what I can come up with! I did bookmark an awesome blog post from Kelly from Another Book in the Wall about “how to blog when you haven’t read anything new“, so I may also go back and reference her post to get some ideas as well. Anything you guys want to see on my blog? It doesn’t have to be book related!


Here are my social media accounts if you’re interested in being friends outside of the amazing blogosphere. I usually post regularly on my personal Instagram account.

Goodreadsheyyitsashley_
Twitter: whoa_itsashley
Pinterestlalalaitsashley
Instagram: heyyitsashley – personal Instagram account
Bookstagram: foreverbookish_ – book Instagram account (underscore after “bookish”)

I will catch up with all of your posts and reply to comments later today or possibly tomorrow. I’m really hoping to try and get some reading in today. 🙂

In case you missed it;
Andy Reads|| Maybe Someday.
March TBR (Maybe).
Wrap Up|| February.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleyblack

2020 Personal Goals.

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Hey!

I created a goals post for reading/blogging (linked at the end of this post), but figured I would do one for my personal goals as well. I had a list of goals for 2019, but I only accomplished maybe five of them. I want to try again and really hoping that I finally get around to some of these things! So what they?

Master my Nikon D3400 manual mode. I’ve had my Nikon for a couple years now and I have yet to really use it other than always having it on “auto”. I want to learn all the camera settings and really start learning the basics. I take pretty great pictures with it, but it’ll be nice to really learn the ins and outs and take even better ones.

Use Duolingo at least 15 minutes every day. I’ve been off and on with Duolingo for years. I’ve been going through the Spanish language with it. My dad is Guatemalan and it would be nice to learn Spanish. We were never taught growing up. I want to start the program over and do it every single day for at least fifteen minutes (can be more if I feeling up to it), so I can finally learn the language.

Learn to cook/make more meals myself & eat healthier. I have no idea how to cook and I honestly never really try very much. I’ve started to sort of learn and actually try in 2019, but a lot of stuff is just boxed or canned and I would love to learn how to cook with more fresh ingredients and spices. I also want to make healthier meals, because we don’t always eat the best things and we eat out way too much.

Setup a daily exercise routine & lose 25 pounds. Toward the beginning of 2019 I started doing this monthly exercise challenges and I did it for three months straight. I thought I noticed some progress, but for some reason I just stopped doing it. I want to try again and exercise regularly. I would also like to lose 25-30 pounds. I know I’ve gained quite a bit of weight over the last few years, so it would be nice to get healthy and lose some pounds.

Start a bullet journal. I’ve always wanted to start a bullet journal. In 2018 I even got two bullet journals and a bunch of supplies (pens, washi tape, stencils, and stickers), but never got around to setting them up. More because I have no idea where to even start! So I want to possibly finally do this.

Change my last name. I got married in March 2017 and I still have not changed my last name officially. I did on Facebook (LOL), but not legally. Lots of things prevented me from doing it and then everything with buying a house and all of that, I just figured it would be easier to just keep everything to same for now. I want to finally change my last name.

Get my driver’s license. This is LOOOOONG overdue, seriously. I think it’s my anxiety that really prevented me from ever doing this, to be honest. Well, when I was in high school, the fact that I never went to school stopped me at first. But then I developed some major anxiety about the world and driving and that’s the main reason now. I really need to work on my fear of driving and the world, so I can practice and finally do it.

Go through my closet and donate clothes. I own so many clothes (the hubby too) and we don’t even wear half of them. I want to finally go through our dresser and closet to get rid of clothes to donate and finally organize our closet. It’s so hard letting things go sometimes, but like I said, we don’t wear half of the clothes we have.

Complete a few house projects. Our house while it’s really great, it’s also a work in progress, because there’s quite a few things I would love to change/update. I’m hoping to do a few more things this new year. Like finally paint our bedroom and redo the flooring in there. We have all the supplies, just never got around to doing it before the year ended. I would also love to repaint the kitchen cabinets and repaint the entire inside of our house. Also a few little inexpensive things like changing all the doorknobs on the bedrooms/closets/bathroom doors.

Go on a trip somewhere. We didn’t really get to travel last year and we don’t really get to that often. I want to plan a trip somewhere for a long weekend (or even an entire week). Possibly Savannah, GA or Colorado. I would even love to go visit Maren (The Worn Bookmark) in Minnesota. All of these are actually possible if we try for them. But even if we can only make it to one place this year, I would be happy.

Complete Kingdom Hearts 3 & Pokemon Sword. I really need to finish these games, especially Kingdom Hearts 3 as I’ve had it for awhile now and have been slacking with playing! I really enjoy the game, but just haven’t been in the mood to play lately. I’m probably halfway through it now. I started Pokemon Sword and got my third gym badge. I need to get back into it, because I feel guilty that I really wanted it and spent the money for it and then after awhile stopped playing. I enjoy the game as well. I guess I’ve been more focused on reading recently instead.

I really just want to find out who I am this year, because honestly, I don’t even know who I am anymore. 2019 really messed with my self-confidence and shattered who I thought I was.

Do you have any personal goals that you hope to accomplish in 2020? Feel free to link me to your posts if you have one.

In case you missed it;
2020 Reading Goals.
2019 Year in Books (Reading Stats).
Wrap Up|| December.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleyblack

Random|| Life & Reading Update.

lifeupdate

Hey!

It’s been almost two weeks since my last update. I’ve been in a blogging slump, honestly. I’ve also been stuck in my head a little bit. So I’ve been trying to distract myself with reading, TV, games on my iPad, or recently the new Pokémon Sword game on Nintendo Switch. This year has been so weird for me and it’s kind of hard to explain. I guess maybe because there has been so many changes this year. A big one having moved four hours away from my family and not seeing them every single day.

I also feel like my anxiety has gotten so much worse too, which really sucks. I can’t really even tell people about it, because then I just get told I’m making a big deal or I need to “grow up” and to “stop being scared of the world”. 🙄 If it was that easy, then I would have stopped being this way a long time ago. It’s hard and it sucks. I feel lost and not very supported in my real life (outside of the blogging world). Dealing with things on your own is hard sometimes. Not having someone to talk to is hard sometimes. That’s why I get stuck in my head sometimes.

I don’t know if any of this made sense and I’m sorry if it didn’t. This has just been a really weird year for me and most of the time I just can’t put it into words. A lot of great things happened too, but I think my mental health took a hit this year. I’ve never experienced most of these feelings before or if I have, never as bad. It’s new and has been an adjustment, I guess. So I that’s why I’ve been distant around here and also in my real life. It’s been all about distracting myself this year, because if I don’t then I just constantly think about everything that bothers me and it makes me sad.

I decorated my house for Christmas, which I love. Here’s a couple pictures of the outside. Just did a couple touches of Christmas outside. I think we might put up some Christmas lights on our house. I really want to go all out Clark Griswold style, but I doubt that happens LOL. We also put up the Christmas tree too. I haven’t been able to take a good picture of it yet.


And here is a quick little reading update of what I read recently and what I may read next.

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I recently finished reading Autoboyography and The Unhoneymooners both by Christina Lauren. By the way, I just realized that Christina Lauren is TWO PEOPLE! Anyway, I really enjoyed both of these books so much. I need to read more from Christina Lauren.

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I think in my last reading update I said I was going to read Regretting You next, but I ended up reading The Unhoneymooners instead since it was a library book that was going to be returned soon. SOOO, I may be picking up Regretting You today. I am supposed to be getting my copy of The Queen of Nothing (I got the black Barnes & Noble edition) today or tomorrow, so I may also be picking that one up soon too. I’m actually scared to read The Queen of Nothing, because I really thought The Wicked King wasn’t that great. I guess we’ll see what happens!

Well, that’s all for this post. I just wanted to give a quick update on why I haven’t been around too much. I try to hop on to catch up with you guys at least once a week, so I will at some point this week. 🙂

In case you missed it;
Mini Review|| The Wives.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleyblack

Why I’ve Been in a Reading/Blogging Slump.

lifeupdate

Hey!

There are a few things I want to write about and the main thing being why I’ve been in a reading/blogging slump. This may get long! Right at the start of May (actually April 30) I was told that I may lose my job. Since that day I have been beyond stressed about what was going to happen with my job and what I was going to do, because we just bought a house in a new city four hours away from family! I currently do not have a license, I never got one as a teen for whatever reason. So it would make finding a new job a struggle. I currently work from home. I also have major social anxiety and talking to people I don’t know kind of freaks me out, so I was kind of just going crazy. What was I going to do? I can’t drive anywhere. I can’t talk to people. It was just a lot to deal with. FYI: I am going to start working on finally getting my license. It’s time!

When I found out about my job, I pretty much cried for a long time. Then I ignored everything happening and read book after book after book to escape that reality. That’s why in May I read so many books and got so many reviews posted. I was ignoring what was happening. I was also waiting to see what was going to happen with my job, because my boss told me he would let me know what is going on in June. Once June hit, I was so nervous waiting to see what my boss was going to tell me. So I stressed out so much and impatiently waiting for that email about what was going to happen. It finally happened 2-3 weeks ago and he told me I could work part-time. So that’s what is happening right now. I am still working, but part-time. It was a little bit of a relief to know I still had a job, but also a downer because it’s part-time. I also don’t feel secure with this job now. I feel like it could still end at any moment and that’s stressful and weighing on me a lot.

Another thing is that this week my work computer crashed and I lost all of my files. I lost all of the stuff that I use for my job. I now have to work on redoing everything. I had so many spreadsheets and starting over really sucks. I had five years worth of work stuff on that computer and a lot of it I use every day. So I’ve been annoyed with that and trying to remember the most important things and a way to start again. The last backup for some things I have date back to December, but the most important things that I use daily I didn’t have saved somewhere else. So now I am stressing about that on top of the work stuff.

My personal computer seems like it’s on it’s last leg too and I need a new computer. The problem is, buying a new computer. Computers are expensive! Now that I am working part-time, we are trying not to spend money as often. I need a new computer at some point, because I really don’t want to risk losing all of my personal stuff; like thousands of pictures and music. UGH. I want a brand new hard drive/tower (I have plenty of computer monitors so I don’t need that), but the hubby thinks we should get refurbished for now. I don’t want to do that, because I don’t want to risk a refurbished computer breaking down a year or two later. So I’ve just been stressed about that too.

I’ve been in this weird place in my head lately and I don’t like it. A lot of it has to do with work. Some of it has to do with the fact that I can’t spend money or do things like I was before. It is now all about saving, saving, saving. I hardly ever leave the house, which usually I’m fine with but lately not really. I want to go do things or buy things, but I can’t because we’re trying not to spend money until we figure out the job situation and what happens in the future with that. I was excited about buying this house, because we would get to fix it up how we wanted it and make it ours. We haven’t really been able to do anything with our house because of all of this. It’s frustrating and annoying and I hate it. I’m not even that excited about owning a house anymore, which is really sad!!

I feel like maybe I’m complaining, but honestly, I’m not the type of person that complains about anything. So this is all new and weird and I don’t like it. I’ve always been an “it is what it is” type person. I usually go with the flow and whatever happens, happens. I’m usually always happy and good vibes. The fact that I haven’t been that person in months sucks! This is not who I am and I don’t like it. I want to get back to my old self, but I’m not entirely sure how to get there. Even writing that line is making me start to cry. It’s so damn sad! I’ve never been like this before and I don’t know what this even is. I just want things to go back to normal, but I don’t think that can happen. At least not right now. I think our “normal” has changed too.

So with all of that being said, I haven’t been blogging much and I haven’t been reading much this month. It’s not because I don’t want to, believe me, I want to! My mind is drowning in other things/thoughts and I can’t seem to figure out a balance between everything. So instead I just do mindless stuff, like watch TV. I’ve been catching up on my DVRed shows and shows I’ve been wanting to watch on Hulu/Netflix that I haven’t gotten the chance to watch yet. I’ve also started exercising every day and I feel like I’m starting to finally see results. I still eat like crap, but whatever. Let me tackle one good thing at a time. LOL.

I also can finally say that I finished my two current reads; well technically I have like 50 pages left in one but it counts because I’m going to go finish it right now after I post this. I’ve been reading these same two books (Naturally Tan and Red, White & Royal Blue) for weeks now due to this reading slump. I’m so sad that this entire month I only read read three books. That’s not like me! My mind has just been elsewhere. I’m hoping that things will start looking up or that I can get out of whatever it is that I’m in in my head. I don’t even know how to classify it, because this has never happened to me before. I don’t even think I was this stressed when I was planning my wedding or even the process of buying a house. That all was a breeze compared to what I am feeling right now.

I am really hoping to finally do that picture update soon. Until then, here are my two favorite pictures that I took over the last month or so.

The first picture was when my friend and I went Pokemon hunting at Lake Mirror here in Lakeland, FL. All over Lakeland there are swans (real and fake) and this one has been my favorite that I’ve seen so far since living here. The second picture is when my family and I went to the beach. We were on a ferry when I took this picture, because we wanted to go to Caladesi Island and in order to get to the island you have to travel by ferry. I’ll have a post all about it with even more pictures soon. It was a fun time!

I think I will end this now (it’s gotten a lot longer than I thought), but hopefully I will be okay soon and you’ll see more of me soon. If I am a little MIA (missing in action), these are the reasons why. I’m still around, just not as much right now. I still try to blog hop and still try to post at least once a week if I can. It’s just harder with where my head is at and also the fact that I haven’t been reading much. Hopefully this all changes soon. Hopefully I can figure out some way to get out of my head and back to reality. Like I said, I just want to get back to my old self. I don’t like who I am lately and that’s never been the case before. I’ve always loved who I was. I’ve always been a happy person. I never let things bother me. Now it’s different and it’s really sad. I’m sad for myself, so much.

This weekend I am going to Cape Coral for my cousin’s son’s birthday party and I am really looking forward to that because I’ll get out of the house and because I’ll be able to see my family who I haven’t seen in almost a month. Do you have any plans for the weekend? What are you currently reading?

In case you missed it;
Top Ten Tuesday|| Most Anticipated Releases.
Mini Review|| Virtually Yours.

I hope you have a great day and weekend!

ashleyblack

Random|| Life Update – New House!

lifeupdate

Hey!

Exciting news….the hubby and I did a thing…we bought a house on Friday (2/8)! We pretty much kept it secret and didn’t talk about it that much to anyone. I didn’t want to jinx things, because we really wanted this to work out! AND WELL….it did!

We are super stoked about it! We took a bunch of our stuff up there that we don’t use often. Funny story…so we brought an air mattress to sleep on, but forgot the air pump to blow it up. So I was like, okay, that’s okay. We have a big comforter we can lay on the the floor with….yeah, forgot that too. LMAO! So we had a ton of sheets and throw blankets to sleep on. Not the best sleep, but it is what it is. HAHA. We aren’t bringing our bed or other furniture until next weekend or the weekend after that.

My mom and aunt ended up coming on Saturday afternoon though and we went out to Walmart to get some stuff. She ended up buying us a couch/futon. It’s a futon, but when folded up it looks like a couch. It is really comfy and it’s really cute. She also bought a couple of air mattresses too, so next time we are good to go until we get all of our stuff up there! It’s currently about 3.5-4 hours from where we currently live.  Don’t mind the mess, we are moving in HAHA. 😛 We spent pretty much all Saturday morning cleaning and doing other things around the house until my mom and aunt got there.

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I haven’t taken any inside pictures yet (besides the one above), but I will probably do that once we are settled in. The weekend was just just crazy busy doing a ton of different things and I guess just taking it all in, because it’s like a huge step in our lives. It’s super cool though! We have SO MUCH space. It’s three bedrooms, two bathrooms, and there’s a bonus room (which we will use like a second living room/family room). The “bonus room” is actually pictured above. We already have a list of things we want to do, haha. That’ll be fun. 😛 We ate lunch on a piece of cardboard Sunday hahah, so we wouldn’t get the floor messy and because we wanted to watch TV. My mom left her hot spot for us to watch TV until we got our own internet setup on Sunday.

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We’ll be going back up Friday night to do some more cleaning and hopefully more organizing of things. The living room when you walk into our house currently has so many boxes, so hopefully we get some things put away and more organized before we bring in the rest of our stuff in the next week or two.

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I took my smaller lens ball with me and got this pretty awesome picture of our house. I’m kind of obsessed with how great this picture turned out. We also have this HUGE tree in our backyard and I’m totally living for it. I already have plans to hang a hammock chair from it. Perfect reading spot while the pup runs around the yard, haha. The yard is fenced in, but we’ll be eventually getting a privacy fence, but for now it’s fine.

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Our house is more in the country side of town, which we actually like. Lots of good picture taking opportunities in the future, haha. Also, there are cows, goats, and horses and lots of woods too. One house across the street before turning into our neighborhood has three goats in their front yard, LOL. The next few pictures aren’t the best quality because we were driving and I didn’t have my zoom lens on my Nikon or the correct setting, but here is some of the area. I definitely plan to get more later this week.

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So we’re now homeowners which is pretty neat! This year is going to be pretty crazy for us. New house, new city, but we’re super stoked to see what happens. We have so much work to do with packing, moving, unpacking so I may not be around too much like I mentioned previously. I apologize in advance! I didn’t even get to read that much this week, which sucked! Hopefully I can finish at least one book this week. I’m halfway through Crooked Kingdom, so I would love to be able to finish that one this week. Guess we’ll see what happens!

In case you  missed it;
WWW Wednesday #56.
Wrap Up|| January.
Book Haul|| January.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleyblack

Christmas 2018.

pictureupdate

Hey!

For Christmas this year were were able to go visit Andy’s parents. It had been a very long time since we’ve been able to have a Christmas with them. They live about 2-2.5 hours away from us. We left on Saturday morning and stayed until the afternoon of Christmas Day. We both had to work the next day, so we had to come home on Christmas.

On Saturday we went downtown to look at some Christmas decorations. Above are a couple of pictures that I took on the way to downtown. You have to drive over a bridge and the sun was starting to set, which was nice.

There are two houses downtown that put up a ton of Christmas decorations. Top two pictures are of one of the houses. For $5 you can go inside and see them all. I didn’t take a ton of pictures inside, because there was so just so much to see and I was pretty much living for everything. I did get a few though.

There were Christmas trees in every single room, it was pretty crazy and totally awesome! These above are some of the Christmas tree pictures that I was able to take and a few of my favorites.

These above are just some other random pictures that I took inside and out side of the houses. After we looked at the Christmas decorations, we went to get some food at 3 Pepper. It’s a Mexican restaurant. It was pretty good. No pictures though. I was starving and dived into my food right away.

After seeing the Christmas decorations and eating, we went back to the house and watched TV for awhile. I think I went to sleep pretty early every night we were there. I had a list of Christmas movies that I like to watch every Christmas, so we worked our way through my list of Christmas movies all weekend/Christmas. On Christmas Eve we had dinner and then Christmas Day we opened presents, had breakfast, and then ate Christmas “dinner” for lunch since we had to leave shortly after that. It was so a lot of fun and I’m glad we were able to spend Christmas with Andy’s family. Dax had a lot of fun being able to hangout with their pup Digby too.

Below are just a bunch of miscellaneous pictures that I took throughout the time we were there.

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We (Andy, his mom, and I) took the dogs on a walk around the neighborhood and the park that’s down the street from their house. These are all the pictures that I took on that walk. It was a really nice day out.

I seen a squirrel in the tree in Andy’s parents backyard and got pretty excited about that, because it was the perfect opportunity to try out my new zoom lens that Andy got me for Christmas. The squirrel was pretty vocal and basically screaming at my dog. HAHA. I think the pictures came out pretty great.

Andy’s parents have an orange tree in their back yard, which is always cool. We were able to pick some oranges to bring home with us. I had fun taking pictures of the tree. Left the orange picking to Andy, haha.

First picture is of Andy and I after we ate dinner of Christmas Eve. Second picture is just a random selfie of myself.

These last set of pictures are from a couple of weekends ago when we went to Lakeland to visit my friend. I figured I would include them as well.

Random view from her guest bedroom window on that Sunday morning. I’m a sucker for a pretty view, haha.

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We seen a house that had SO MANY Christmas lights and decorations, so I had to snap a picture. We also drove down another street and every single house on the street went ALL OUT with their decorations. I didn’t get any pictures, but I wish I had.

And these are just a couple pictures of her cat Bruce. He’s so cute, but he’s still unsure about me. HAHA. Once we are living in Lakeland, I am determined to make him love me. 😛 Although we did make some progress after I gave him some treats. Treats = friend?

Anyway, that’s my picture update for today. I had a great Christmas and we got so many wonderful presents (including an Instant Pot and an iPad Mini) from both our families. I ate a TON of food and candy, which was good and bad (because I totally over did it) haha. How was your holiday or weekend? I have five other blog posts that I am working on that will slowly be making there way onto the blog. Wrap up and book haul coming soon. I’ll have a 2019 reading goals post and a reading challenge I am hoping to tackle in 2019 coming as well. I still need to work on my end of the year book survey too. Be on the look out for a bunch of posts soon. 😀

In case you missed it;
TBB Asks: Holiday Edition.
Random|| Picture Update.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleychristmas

TBB Asks: Holiday Edition.

Hey!

I’ve been so busy with all my last minute Christmas stuff and life in general, so I haven’t been around the blog much the last week or two. Hopefully that changes soon. I need to catch up with you guys ASAP, promise! 😀 A lot of things happening right now, so my mind is preoccupied. Today though, I figured it would be fun to post this holiday themed blog post since Christmas is coming up soon and I’m not sure when I’ll get another chance to post. I seen Brandie (Running on Words and Wine) post this on her blog, so I figured I would too. I love Christmas. 😛

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Candy Canes? Yes or No?
I don’t mind candy canes. I don’t usually eat them by themselves very much anymore, unless it’s a mini one. When I was a kid I used to love eating them right off the Christmas tree though. I do love candy cane flavored things though! Especially chocolate, like peppermint bark. I LIVE FOR PEPPERMINT BARK!

Christmas morning early riser or sleep in?
Honestly, I’m an early riser period these days. So I guess I am an early riser on Christmas morning; as a kid I was too. As an adult, I’m more of an early riser because I get way too excited about giving everyone their gifts. LOL. I don’t even care about gifts myself, but giving gifts is my thing and so I get way too stoked about everyone seeing their gifts, haha.

Did you shop on Black Friday? 
This year I went to a couple places to see what kind of deals they had going on, but I don’t think I bought anything besides one DVD for myself. Normally, I don’t usually do Black Friday shopping. I don’t like big crowds and being around a lot of people at one time, so I usually stay home.

Christmas tree up in November? 
Yes, I love putting my Christmas tree up in November. I’m very guilty of this and I don’t even care. Judge all you want, but I love being able to enjoy my Christmas for as long as possible.

Do you get holiday ideas from Pinterest?
I love pinning holiday ideas in my Pinterest boards, but I don’t always do them. I guess I just collect pins. But if I was looking for an idea, I would definitely go to Pinterest.

Christmas Glam or Ugly Sweater?
Ugly sweater, for sure. I’m not the “glam” type of person. I don’t really dress up and I definitely do not wear any makeup at all. I’m all about jeans, converse shoes, and ugly sweaters.

Stocking Stuffers: Wrapped or unwrapped?
As much as I love wrapping gifts, I don’t usually wrap stocking stuffers. Depending on the size of the gift, I will though; but very rarely.

Traditional or Modern Christmas songs?
Traditional Christmas songs. I don’t really listen to new Christmas music (or Christmas music in general), so I don’t know what all modern Christmas songs are out there or that come out. So I know and am used to the old traditional Christmas songs/versions of the old songs. I do love the Hanson Christmas album though, haha.

Fruitcake?
Never had it. I don’t even think I’ve ever seen one, but I hear they’re gross so I probably would never try it.

Is your Christmas shopping finished?
Yes! All prezzies are bought and wrapped. My Christmas shopping is officially done as far as buying gifts goes. I do have to stop by the bank before Christmas to get some money for my niece and nephew as their gifts, but it’s done.

Is there snow in December where you live?
Sadly, no. I live in Florida and there’s no snow here. On the rare occasion it’ll snow in northern Florida, but hardly ever, especially not in South Florida where I currently live. When I used to live in Illinois as a kid, it snowed and that was fun.

Classic Show: A Charlie Brown Christmas or Rudolph?
A Charlie Brown Christmas, always. I love Charlie Brown anything, so I always make it a point to watch the Christmas show every year. As I do with all the holidays where there is a Charlie Brown special.

This weekend we’re going to Andy’s parents house for Christmas, so I will be pretty busy with that. I’m excited though since we haven’t had Christmas with them in such a long time. What are you holiday plans?

In case you  missed it;
Random|| Picture Update.
December TBR.
Wrap Up|| November.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleychristmas

Random|| Picture Update.

pictureupdate

Hey!

I haven’t updated since last Friday, ahhh. I’ve been meaning to, but have just been really busy and pretty stressed about things. My sister was in the hospital for a week and that ended up being such a disaster (hospital’s fault). She’s finally home though and recovering, so that’s good. We’ve also been busy packing, but another post on this another time.

These are some random hospital views from my sister’s hospital room and from another room in the hospital. Hospital food is gross, by the way. We had to eat dinner there once. I will say though, they had some pretty amazing french fries. The other food I got wasn’t the greatest.

Pictures of my niece (Grace) and my nephew (Jackson). I spent a lot of time keeping an eye on them while their mom was in the hospital. One night I cooked them dinner; grilled cheese, simple, right? WRONG. It’s not surprise that I don’t know how to cook, but apparently I can’t even cook a grilled cheese. By time I got to making the third and forth one, they were burning. I even burnt the pan so bad and burned the shape of the bread into the pan LMAO. The burn still won’t come out of the pan. Haha. They still tasted good though. That’s all the matters? 😛

We have a bird feeder (left) hanging over an empty pot that has some dirt in it. Well thanks to all the little birdies that eat from the feeder, we now have this random sunflower growing. It actually already bloomed, but I haven’t had the chance to take a picture yet. Pretty neat! It also looks like we might have some wheat growing in the pot too, lol!

Random things with the hubby. We went to Target to get some containers for my books and they put in a new Harry Potter section at the store. We were walking through the store and also seen a random Sorting Hat photo prop. I made him take a picture, lol. He’s taken the test on Pottermore a couple years ago and got sorted into Hufflepuff. We also got shaved ice from that new place that opened up near us. I talked about it in my last picture update. It’s so good!

Random pictures of Leaf and Dax. I don’t have any new pictures of October and Colby right now. Actually quite a surprise, because I am forever taking pictures of my furbabies, haha.

Shark Week started last Sunday, so it was fitting I wear my shark shirt. I LOVE sharks and I LOVE Shark Week. I’ve been so busy this week though and haven’t had the chance to watch all the new Shark Week shows. I am hoping I get some time soon, because I have A LOT of them. They usually do like 2-3 new shows a night and it’s for six nights I believe. So that’s a lot of shows I need to catch up on. I’ve recorded them all to my DVR though, so that’s good. And a random selfie.

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La luna y la estrella ♡ I got this really neat picture on my iPhone of the moon and a star right next to it! I thought it was really cool. I tried with my camera, but it just wasn’t working out for me, so I decided to just get this shot with my phone.

A new BBQ restaurant opened up down the street from our house. Like it’s literally at the end of our street. So my mom and I finally decided to check it out. Since it’s right down the street, we decided to walk there. On the way home I seen this bush with these little yellow flowers and thought it was really pretty. Yesterday after work I seen this spiked caterpillar on a plant as I was leaving.

A random sunset picture. I was also trying to mess around with the manual mode on my D3400 again. I still have yet to master it. I just haven’t had the time to really do much with it. Hopefully that changes soon. Anyway, I got these really pretty pictures of the sky and silhouetted trees.

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Another sunset picture, because you guys know I live for taking pictures of the sky/sunsets/sunrises. This was on our way from having dinner with the hubby’s parents when they flew back in from vacation. It was raining, but it made this picture pretty amazing. I focused on the raindrops instead of the sky and I love how it turned out. I used my phone for this one.

I created a page on my blog arcs/review books. It’s going to be home to all of the books that I have been sent by publishers and authors. I mentioned how I wanted to create a blog post for it, but I decided to do it as a page instead. That way I can update it throughout the year and then when a new year rolls around, I can clear it and start again with a new year of review books. It’s linked above, so feel free to check it out! Hopefully it’ll also keep me on top of my reviews and books. I have been really busy this year though, so I fell a bit behind. I am still hoping to read them all this year if I can. If not, I will still get to them ASAP!

Tomorrow I am going to Lake Placid to help my cousin move. Her and her husband just bought a house and they finally closed on it earlier this week. My mom and I are going after I get off work and staying until at least Saturday night, possibly even until Sunday. I am excited to go, because a new place to take pictures, lol. Anyway, that’s all for this post! I will hopefully catch up with your posts later today or tomorrow. 🙂

In case you missed it;
Friday Finds #74.
Book Tag||My Blog’s Name in Books.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleyblack

Random|| Picture Update.

pictureupdate

Hey!

It’s been almost three months since I’ve done one of these posts and I don’t even know where to begin with it. I don’t remember what I have and haven’t posted already. So there may be a few repeats. I love posting these type of posts and my pictures, but when I go so long without doing one then I have no clue where to begin again, ahhh. 😛  Warning this is probably going to be REALLY picture heavy, because there’s probably 60+ pictures.

Feel free to follow me on Instagram (heyyitsashley)! A lot of these haven’t been posted on my Instagram yet, so you’re seeing them first! Eventually they’ll make their way on there. I take so many pictures and don’t want to post a million at one time, so I hoard pictures to post later, lol. Anyway, onto my pictures!

Let’s start with FOOD, because food is amazing. 😛

I stumbled upon this restaurant called “I Heart Mac & Cheese” and holy crap I was in heaven. I needed to go their, ASAP! Last week the hubby’s parents came down to visit and they took us there and it was great. I got the pulled pork mac & cheese. SO MUCH CHEEEEESE!

Recently the hubby and I tried a new pizza place (it’s amazing and we’ve already gone twice in like a week and a half) and we also tried a new burger place that was really great too. The burger place is called BurgerFi and the pizza place was called D’Salvos.

This new shaved ice place opened up down the street so we tried it out for my aunt’s birthday. It was really good. They sell alcoholic drinks in kind of shaved ice form and they were good. No picture of the drink, but I do got a picture of the shaved ice we got too. Also, their interior decor is amazing. One wall is painted like the ocean/sky. The ceiling has lights that are printed with clouds on them. The floor is like the ocean. And the table is sea glass. I accidentally deleted my picture of the floor. They also have a chalkboard wall so you can write/draw on it.

The shaved ice is blueberry. It’s sitting on the shaved ice table. The ocean/sky scene in the background is one of their walls. Below is my mom writing on their chalkboard wall and the top right corner is their sky/cloud lighting. SO COOL! 🙂

Alright, moving right along. Onto, furbabies!

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A year ago yesterday my little Leaf turned one (well technically she turned one in June, but I got her in July so that’s her new birthday). I tried so hard for days to get pictures of her in the birthday hat, but she just wasn’t having it. So I got pictures of her eating the birthday hat instead? They are all still pretty cute pictures though. I am so stoked we decided to keep her. We love her so much.

We’ve been dogsitting the hubby’s parents’ dog and Leaf and Digby love each other so much. It’s cute. They’ve been playing so much together to. 😀 Here is another picture of Digby, because I have a problem with taking pictures of animals. 😛

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My four! Dax, Leaf, October, ColbyJack.

And some pictures of them loving each other.

Some other misc. pictures. First two are the cats are when I was trying to relax in the bath, but they all wanted to watch me. WEIRDOS. Third picture of me walking the pup. And the last picture is Leaf photobombing my picture of October.

Now onto nature type pictures. First up, the sky.

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Next, flowers and plants.

First picture is a shadow of some leaves on the side of our house. I really love how it turned out.

The rest are just some random pictures.

Some really neat buildings I’ve seen. The first picture each shop is a different color. Second picture is a parking garage that is painted to be a sunset (or sunrise). The entire parking garage isn’t picture. It’s HUGE.

A couple different pictures of the moon.

Playing with sparklers with my nephew and sister. My nephew didn’t a bunch of scribbles with his sparklers while I took a picture. My sister tried to write things out. Got this really cool one of an “A” she did. Last picture is just me holding the sparkler.

The hubby’s eye, lol. For some reason I really LOVE this picture though. And the second picture is of me and my new glasses! 😛  I really love these glasses.

And DONE! So many pictures. There’s even more pictures that I probably didn’t post, but trying to figure them out will be so hard. I’ll just leave you with these and hopefully I don’t let myself go months without doing another one of these posts. I will hopefully catch up with all of your posts at some point this week. I hope you had a great weekend!

In case you missed it;
Travel|| Black Point Marina.
Wrap Up|| June.
Book Haul|| June.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleyblack

Random|| Life Update.

lifeupdate

Hey!

So I think I am battling a reading slump, which totally sucks! I was flying through books this month. I was making pretty big progress with my June TBR (check it out here). I read seven books (most were graphic novels) and then finished another that I had started in May. That’s eight books I read at the beginning of this month and I read them so fast too and I think I burned myself out, to be honest. My current read Love, Hate, and Other Filters goes back to the library in SIX DAYS and I am not anywhere near to finishing it, because I haven’t been in the mood to read. I am really enjoying it too and that makes it worse, in my opinion.

I also have things happening in my life that are taking over brain space. My mind is elsewhere. I’ve even neglected finishing some school stuff, ugh. I have a lot of things that need to happen in such a short amount of time. I try to stay composed though and realistically, I probably brush off a lot of important things. If things don’t make me happy or things I don’t want to do, then I tend to ignore doing those things for as long as possible. I also have this mindset that whatever happens, happens. I mean, that’s a pretty good mindset…to an extent. It’s good for things that are not really in your control. What’s happening now was totally in my control…

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I am a huge procrastinator, not going to lie. Example: I’ve known I was going to be moving for probably almost a year now and I have done nothing to move the process along to make it go more smoothly. I have three months now and….I’m fucked? Everyday I procrastinate things and then things happen that are no longer in my control and my trusty (not full proof, by the way) motto pops into my head “whatever happens, happens”. So when I say my mind is elsewhere, it’s on what the heck am I going to do about moving?

Where? How? How much is this going to cost? Savings? What savings? Things come up and there goes the savings. What about all the crap the hubby and I own? We own so much damn stuff, ughhh. What happen to minimalism this year? I had plans to toss pretty much all our stuff this year… <— I put that idea to the side and decided i’d come back to it later the next day after thinking it. I have four animals, who’s going to rent to someone with three cats and a dog? I’m sure there is ways around this, but I get paranoid they’ll find out and then we’ll be screwed. BLEHHHH. Life.

What about work? I am socially awkward (hence my blog name) and I also have MAJOR social anxiety…so the fact that I have to talk to my boss about potentially moving away but still REALLY wanting to keep my job is freaking me the hell out. I have the type of job that I can do it from home if needed. I have panic attacks thinking about this. If he says no, then we have to stay here; in this expensive city that realistically we just can’t afford anymore. Or if my boss says no and we still move to the cheaper city that I really want to move to, what am I going to do about a job? I can’t talk to people. SOCIAL ANXIETY SUCKS. I can’t handle finding a new job. Even thinking this is a possibility is scary as hell!

So what do I do when I can’t handle things? I pretend this is all a non-existent thing in my life and go about my life; doing whatever it is that I want to do instead of what I NEED to do. Sometimes I like to think I work harder (maybe even better) under pressure or a deadline, because I literally have no other choice but to do the work now that there is no time to stall or that word again…procrastinate. That’s not a good way to go about life either, by the way. Everything is a lot easier when you give yourself time to actually do things instead of trying to do a million things in a short amount of time on top of your regular life stuff. It only drives you crazy.

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I honestly had no intentions of this post to turn out like this. I was actually going to tell you guys I was in a reading slump and then post pictures that I took while at the park with my sister a couple weeks ago. I am so tired of adulting. Not that I really do much of it aside from pay my bills on time. That’s probably the only thing I got right as far as this adult thing goes. Sometimes I buy vegetables. I think I rambled way too much and I think I needed to just vent this all somewhere.

Anyway, this is part of why I’ve been so MIA on here. It’s also what kick-started this reading slump. I have so many things I need to figure out. I also need to figure out how to get over my fear of talking to my boss, because I really need to do it ASAP. The sooner the better, especially because we need to do know if we’re staying or going. Enough of that though. Here’s a lens ball picture of me that my sister took. I was taking a picture of her taking a picture of me through the lens balls, lol.

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I’ll share all of my other pictures soon. I have some from when my sister and I went to a park. I also have some from when we visited our dad and we went to another park. And then a TON more from the last 2.5 months. I’m sorry if I continue to be a little less active for awhile. This post pretty much explains why and also what my life is going to be like the next few months trying to figure all of this out!

In case you missed it;
Book Tag|| Mid-Year Freak Out.
Thoughts|| Be Prepared.
Thoughts|| All Summer Long.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleyblack

 

Travel|| Butterfly World.

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Hey!

The hubby and I celebrated our one year wedding anniversary over the weekend (March 25th). We decided to finally check out Butterfly World. I’ve been wanting to go for so long now. Here are a bunch of pictures that I took while there.

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There are different sections of Butterfly World. These first four pictures below are part of the area where the butterflies are. The garden area was really pretty.

These next set of pictures are of some of the butterflies. It wasn’t easy getting pictures when they were flying around like crazy. There were some that did land though, so that was cool. There were so many big butterflies and they were all so pretty too. My favorite were the blue ones, but it was so hard to get pictures of them; they never landed and when they did it was with their wings folded. With their wings folded, they weren’t blue. I did manage to get one picture with a few of them flying though (toward the bottom of the set of pictures).

A butterfly even landed on the Andy’s hand! That was pretty neat. We were just walking around and it landed on him. I was totally jealous, haha. I wanted one to land on me, but I knew I would have probably freaked out if one did. LOL. When they were all flying at me, I was freaking out. So probably a good idea they didn’t.

Once you leave the butterfly area, there are some other little garden areas with flowers and birds. There was also this cool suspension bridge.

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Walking across the suspension bridge you run into a little area that had some Macaws. They were really cool and I loved their colors. There were also some other little birds around. I got a few pictures of them, because they mostly just flew around.

Another garden area with some random flowers and plants. There was a monarch butterfly on one of the flowers, so I was able to get a few pictures of that which ended up honestly being my favorite pictures of the day. Below are the flower pictures.

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Overall, it was really neat, but I wouldn’t say that it was worth the price. It was $30 a person and it only took us 20-30 minutes to walk through the entire thing. If I wasn’t stopping to take pictures, it would have taken even less time. It was still really pretty and the butterflies were really awesome. I still really enjoyed it and happy that we went at least once. We ended up walking through it twice, because I didn’t like that we spent $60 for a 20-30 minute walk-through. The second time around we decided to sit down in the butterfly garden area and let the butterflies fly around us.

I got some good pictures though, so that was nice. I also got to hangout with Andy, which is always great. It’s rare that we have days off together. He has to ask for the day off work or I have to ask for the day off work in order for that to happen, so we don’t always get to do a many things together. I am pretty stoked that we got to hangout for our anniversary. We even got P.F. Chang’s for dinner and it was so good. I still think about that sesame chicken and dumplings days later.

That’s all for this post! Hopefully I’ll have a review of Love and Other Carnivorous Plants posted in a few days. I don’t have much left to read. I also really want to finish it before the end of March. I want to go into April with no unfinished books, because I have a ton of review books that I need to get to. I think I have at least 4-5 books that I need to read and review. I’ll have my book haul post in the next couple days too. I have quite the haul this month.

In case you missed it;
Travel|| Biscayne National Park.
Friday Finds #72.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleyblack

Photo A Day|| February Part Three.

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Hi!

I’ll have my February wrap up of all the books that I read this month posted tomorrow. I wanted to get my photo a day post up before the first day of March. I also need to do another random picture update for the rest of February, so that’ll be coming up probably sometime next week. Anyway, onto the last of the February photo a day challenge pictures!


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 3-5 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.

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Instagram Caption: 🐝🌼 || photo a day • little.
Camera:
Nikon.

I actually posted two pictures ( the one above and one below) for this day, because I couldn’t decide which picture I liked better. You guys, I am absolutely terrified of bees (mostly getting stung by a bee). I love taking pictures of them though, weird…I know. HAHA. Same with all bugs, really.

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Instagram Caption: ♡♡♡♡ || photo a day • depth of field.
Camera:
iPhone.

I wasn’t entirely sure what “depth of field” was, but from the looks of other people’s pictures it was when there was a subject and everything else was blurry around it. So I just went with it and posted this picture I took of this little pink flower.



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Instagram Caption: 🖤🖤 || photo a day • my face.
Camera:
iPhone.

Hey, it’s Me! 😛 I am still living for these new glasses. They are now my go-to pair of glasses that I am constantly wearing. I neglect my other three pairs.


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Instagram Caption: i need to work today, but i want to read instead. 😭📖 || photo a day • need/want.
Camera:
iPhone.

I did wear these glasses this day though, lol. 😛 These are my other favorite pair that I own. I usually switch between these two more than the others. Anyway! YOU GUYS!!! Immortal Reign is SO FREAKING GOOD! I’ve been reading it very slowly, because I don’t want it to end. Last Friday I accidentally left IR at work and I wanted to cry. I had planned to read a bunch over the weekend and I forgot my book and it was pretty devastating considering I had to go the ENTIRE weekend without it. I decided to not bring it to work with me this week, just in case I forgot it again. haha.

In case you missed it;
Book Haul|| February.
Tag|| The Book Blogger Insider.
Photo A Day|| February Part Two.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleyblack

Photo A Day|| February Part Two.

photoaday1

Hi!

I am kind of in a reading slump right now, which totally sucks. I haven’t been in the mood to read anything for the past week or so. I’ve been watching a lot of TV, which is fine. I mentioned how I was so far behind on TV shows as I am books. Hopefully I get out of this slump ASAP, because I have a lot of books I want to read. Like a ton of ARCs that I need to get reviews up for. Since I don’t really have anything to talk about as far as books goes, here is another photo a day post with pictures from the last few days.


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 3-5 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.

It’ll be a little different this month and I won’t count the actual days of the month, because I missed a lot of days this month. I totally forgot the challenge even started toward the beginning of the month.

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Instagram Caption: “sometimes the place you are used to is not the place you belong.” 🖤 || photo a day • black & white. 
Camera:
Nikon.

I LOVE this picture. I love taking pictures of fences. I took a few different ones that day, but I really liked how this one came out. I also really love the quote I decided to put as the caption.


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Instagram Caption: throwback to flying over arizona back in 2016 when we were on our way to california. i need another vacation, asap! ✈️ || photo a day • travel.
Camera:
iPhone.

Throwback picture to mine and the hubby’s vacation to California in 2016. This is one of my favorite pictures that I took. I want to go on another vacation, on another plane, so I can take more pictures from the sky! I also really want to go back to San Francisco, because I didn’t get to do all the things that I really wanted to do.


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Instagram Caption: hollywood beach 🌊 | photo a day • in the details.
Camera:
 iPhone.

One the side of the outside wall of a restaurant on the beach, there is this really cool mosaic picture. I always like taking pictures of it and it’s so detailed and it went perfectly for the topic this day.


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Instagram Caption: 🌊🌴☀️✌🏼 || photo a day • stripes.
Camera:
iPhone.

This picture was also taken at the beach in the parking garage. I thought it looked cool being able to see the beach from the little window and it ended up going perfect for “stripes”. I have another picture from the parking garage too that isn’t through the slatted window. I’ll have to post that in a picture update post at some point.


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Instagram Caption: “my only goal in life right now is to be genuinely happy.” ♡ || photo a day • time.
Camera:
iPhone.

This one is just a totally random picture. It probably doesn’t really go with “time”, but I used a quote that could go with it as the caption. I am LIVING for the quote I put as the caption. I took it this morning right before it was TIME to go to work though, LOL. So I decided to just post it anyway. I also really love it even though it is completely random and I was just messing around waiting for my sister to finish getting ready.

In case you missed it;
Photo A Day|| February Part One.
WWW Wednesday #46.
3 & 3.5 star reads of 2017.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleyblack

Photo A Day|| January 22-31 & GIVEAWAY WINNER!

photoaday1

Hi!

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.

I skipped quite a few days. I couldn’t figure out what I wanted to take pictures of, didn’t have older backup pictures, or I just completely forgot about them. Here are the rest of the pictures for the challenge though. This post will also contain more pictures than the usual four. I want to get all of them up since it’s now February.

Days 22-31 of January

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Day 22: Scenic.
Instagram Caption: thalassophile 🌊
Camera: Nikon.

Thalassophile: A lover of the sea, someone who loves the sea/ocean. I am kind of obsessed with this ocean shot. I got a couple more really awesome ones too, but I’ll share them another day.


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Day 25: My morning view.
Instagram Caption: ♡♡♡♡
Camera: iPhone.

Random view outside of my house. I was walking my dog Dax before work and decided to snap a picture of the sky, because it looked really pretty that day.


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Day 26: Thank you for…
Instagram Caption: i have been waiting YEARS for this day. words cannot even express how happy i was when the dangerous summer said they were back! i am so stoked for their new album that’s finally here! 🖤🎵
Camera: Nikon.

What my caption says! THE DANGEROUS SUMMER HAS A NEW ALBUM OUT NOW!! Their last album was in 2013, because they broke up. When I heard they were getting back together, I was beyond so stoked! THEN their album was finally released and it was EVERYTHING I ever hoped it would be and more. I’ve listened to it at least 20+ times on repeat and I listened to it at least once all the way through every day since it came out. IT’S SO DAMN GOOD! AND ALL THE FEELS, HOLY CRAP!! GO LISTEN TO THIS ALBUM or at least listen to Color and Luna; those two are my absolute favorite. But I swear, every single song is on point and amazing. You will feel things.


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Day 28: Text.
Instagram Caption: i am pretty stoked to read this. 📖🖤
Camera: iPhone.

I seen this book floating around a little bit and honestly, it’s perfect for me. I am really stoked to read it. Hopefully I get around to it really soon. Currently have a ton of books on my immediate TBR though, because my library decided it would be cool to check out all my e-book holds to me at one time. I would recheck them out later, but a lot of them were holds that I’ve been waiting on for a long time.


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Day 29: Magic.
Instagram Caption: throwback to disney. ♡
Camera: iPhone.

DISNEY WORLD. I NEED TO GO BACK! I used an older picture for this day, because I honestly had no idea what to take a picture of for “magic” and HELLOOOO….DISNEY IS FULL OF MAGIC!


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Day 30: Secret.
Instagram Caption: adventure. 🌲
Camera: Nikon.

This is also an older picture I don’t think I ever posted anywhere. The hubby and I went to this really cool nature trail park last year. I want to go back, because I don’t think we were able to walk all the trails. There were several different ones.

Starting a new monthly challenge today for February! Hopefully I can actually complete an entire month without skipping. 😛


Now for the person that won my giveaway! I actually decided to pick TWO winners.

Kristi from Confessions of a YA Reader
&
Kelly from Another Book in the Wall

Email me at sociallyawkwardbookworm@outlook.com

I will have more giveaways in the near future, so don’t worry if you didn’t win this time! It was fun to do this giveaway and I am stoked to do another  one soon. 😀

In case you missed it;
Wrap Up|| January.
Book Haul|| January.
5 star reads of 2017.
Photo A Day|| January 17-21.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleyblack

Photo A Day|| January 17-21.

photoaday1

Hi!

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 17-21 of January.

I accidentally skipped day 20 (which would have been “reflection”).

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Day 17: Thoughtful.
Instagram Caption: i love this guy and all the things he does for me. i can be a pain in the butt a lot of the time, but he loves me anyway. 🖤🌊
Camera: iPhone.

Went out to eat one night on a taco place at the beach with the hubby. The tacos were amazing (pictures in a later post) and the beach is always nice.


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Day 18: Cool.
Instagram Caption: “Even paradise could become a prison if one had enough time to take notice of the walls.” 📖
Camera: Nikon.

Quote used is from Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes. I can’t wait for the final book to come out in February. I am dying to get my hands on it, so I can read it. Hands down one of my favorite series ever.


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Day 19: Paper.
Instagram Caption: i made a new TBR jar of some of my unread books that i really want to try to read this year. my final list ended up being 124 books (i actually own about 500 unread books 😳). i would love to read all 124, but realistically i probably won’t. it’ll be fun randomly choosing which ones to read next though.
Camera: iPhone.

So like my Instagram caption says. I made a new TBR jar (that I probably won’t use, lol) of the 124 unread books out of 500 unread that I own that I want to try to read this year. I’m most likely not going to read all 124 books, but I mean I want to choose books from just that 124 on the list. Plus whatever books I check out from the library and new releases. I just added older books to that list and a few from 2017 that I really want to make a priority this year and probably next year.


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Day 21: Day off.
Instagram Caption: i should probably clean up the house, but will most likely lay in bed with leafy all day. 😴🐱
Camera: iPhone.

Leaf forever cuddles with me and I freaking love it! My other cats don’t give me enough attention, lol.

I am having a giveaway for my three year blogiversary on my blog that goes until the end of January! I linked the blog post below, so you can check it out!

In case you missed it;
Three Year Blogiversary & Giveaway!
Top Ten Tuesday|| Books I liked, but can’t remember.
Photo A Day|| January 13-16.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleyblack

Photo A Day|| January 13-16.

photoaday1

Hi!

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 13-16 of January.

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Day 13: Floral.
Instagram Caption: g o o d • v i b e s ✌🏼
Camera: iPhone.

I seen this shirt at Five Below and had to have it! It went perfect for my “floral” photo a day topic too. 😀


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Day 14: Faceless Portrait.
Instagram Caption: “my life is shaped by the urgent need to wander and observe, and my camera is my passport.” 📷✌🏼
Camera: Nikon.


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Day 15: New.
Instagram Caption: i am living for the january @puravidabracelets pack.
Camera: iPhone.

I am seriously ADDICTED to Pura Vida Bracelets. I’m scared to even count how many I have. The last count was around 30 and that was months ago. I even have a bunch of their ankle bracelets too. I subscribe to their monthly subscription where you get three bracelets (sometimes four) every single month and they are usually part of theme, which you don’t know until you get the bracelets. I am usually in love with every single one. The theme for January looks like it is an ocean/ship theme and it’s probably one of my favorites! And there were four bracelets this month! What I love about the subscription is that it’s only $15 and you get some of there pricier bracelets every single month! I tend to not buy their really expensive bracelets (like the seed bead and most charm bracelets), because I don’t want to spend $15-25 on just one bracelet. With the monthly club though, you get those as part of the package and you still only pay $15 a month. And they are exclusive to the monthly club first. Anyway, I’m rambling, LOL! I just love their bracelets.


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Day 16: Wall.
Instagram Caption: throwback to NYC in june 2017.
Camera: Nikon.

I took this picture back in June when I went to NYC as part of my honeymoon and never posted it, so I decided to use it for my photo a day topic for this day. I also didn’t go anywhere cool this day and my walls are plain at home LOL.

I am having a giveaway for my three year blogiversary on my blog that goes until the end of January! I linked the blog post below, so you can check it out! 

In case you missed it;
Three Year Blogiversary & Giveaway!
Thoughts|| A Taxonomy of Love.
Photo A Day|| January 9-12.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleyblack

Photo A Day|| January 9-12.

photoaday1

Hi!

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 9-12 of January.

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Day 9: Everyday Moments.
Instagram Caption: leaf; she’s forever pretty. ♡
Camera: iPhone.

If little Leaf could stop growing, that would be great! I am obsessed with her and she has this completely opposite personality than my other two cats. She loves water (playing in it, taking showers with us (LOL)), she loves attention and cuddling, she loves people and always wants to be in your face, she’s crazy fun, and she loves to play with toys.


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Day 10: I like this!
Instagram Caption: october is forever in her own world. everyone thinks she’s not friendly or the “evil one”, but she’s just hella shy, likes to do her own thing, and likes attention only when she wants it. she doesn’t tolerate it otherwise. shes the loner of the pack, but she’s actually really sweet if you’re alone with her. i love her to death and wouldn’t have her any other way. 🎃
Camera: iPhone.

My other girl, October and exactly what my caption says. Although this past week, she has been a little more opened to hanging out with the rest of us. As you can see, she’s completely opposite of Leaf. And then there’s my boy ColbyJack (picture below). He thinks he’s king of the house and the other furbabies, but really he’s just a huge drama queen. LOL. I also have my pup Dax, he’s super chill, almost always happy, and loves people and all animals (big or small).

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Day 11: Me.
Instagram Caption: “i’m starting to be where i need to be.” ♫
Camera: iPhone.


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Day 12: Sweet.
Instagram Caption: much needed after this week. 🍺
Camera: iPhone.

Last week was kind of a crazy week, so Friday the hubby and I went out to get food and drinks. Much needed grapefruit beer.

In case you missed it;
Thoughts|| The Cruel Prince.
Photo A Day|| January 5-8.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleyblack

Random Ramble.

I haven’t done a post since Friday and I’ve been kind of holding off until I get my new computer on Wednesday. It’ll be so nice doing posts from my own computer. I hate asking to borrow computers or trying to do posts from my phone that I usually give up on and edit at work.

I started to read Dorothy Must Die and then four chapters in I started to feel guilty for starting it and not having finished Yes Please like I told myself I would. So I stopped reading it and went back to Amy Poehler’s book.

Breaking all the rules before I felt guilty about it…
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Currently my started but not finished books are (not including Dorothy Must Die):

158811733126920510241+ Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling
+ Lost in Babylon (Seven Wonders Book 2) by Peter Lerangis
+ Endgame: The Calling by James Frey

I really didn’t want to add to the list and make it end up being uncontrollable. It’s not even that I didn’t like these books, I DO! I just found other books that sounded a bit better, sigh. I am currently 140 pages from being done with Yes Please, so I can do it! FYI: Yes Please is great, so don’t let me discourage you. I really like it, I just have been in the mood for a different type of book. I will have these three books finished by the end of this year and cross my fingers I don’t add to this list.

It’s almost the end of the month, so I’ll be doing my February recap of the books I read. That’s always exciting. I like to look back on all the books I’ve read. It feels pretty cool, you know? This month was a good month too.

My birthday is next Tuesday (March 3rd)! I’ll be 27…I swear I still feel like a child most of the time. I have no plans, but that’s okay. I don’t usually do much, to be honest. I really just want some cake. Maybe ice cream. Definitely cake though.

I bought The Night Circus the other day at Target. I really should not be allowed in stores that sell books. I also bought a bunch of random things to go on my new desk at home. You can never have enough paper clips, post it notes, and thumbtacks that you’ll never use! You might use them, but I know I won’t.

I hinted (I told, lol) to my boyfriend that I really wanted a whiteboard (that is magnetic) and a cork board for the walls by my desk. Will I ever use them? Probably not. Would it look insanely cute? Of course. Our room isn’t cluttered enough, obviously. Probably 95% of the things in our apartment is mine.

I collect way too many things and I love cute things, so you know, I just buy everything even if I don’t need it or ever use it. Buying books is not my only problem, not at all. I’m pretty sure my kitten and my dog have more toys than the average human child. They don’t touch them, but I keep buying them.

I might be a little crazy. “Little” might be an understatement too. Today I burned my frozen pizza in the oven and got insanely sad about it. I told my boyfriend I sucked at life and he told me I just sucked at cooking. So there’s that.

Anyway…I’ll leave you with a picture, because everyone loves pictures. I was hanging out with pelicans the other day, because it’s kind of cool. He also thought I had fish…sadly, he was mistaken.

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My dog is currently snoring right now and it’s pretty cute. I’m off to read until the boyfriend gets home. We have a date with Sam, Dean, and Castiel; can’t keep my boys waiting!

Have you read any good books recently? Is there any books you’ve started, but haven’t finished?

Weekend Happiness.

Things that made me happy this weekend (kind of picture heavy):

Doctor Who references in a book I was reading.
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Dax’s 5th birthday (feb. 8) and I would be lying if I said I remembered. I didn’t realize until I got an email from the vet saying Happy Birthday. BUT hey, I put a birthday hat on him and he was happy, so it was a win.
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Random adventures and pretty scenery.

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My kitten being his strange little self. It never gets old when he climbs into these.

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And when he decides it’s cool to eat his food out of the container instead of waiting for me to put it in his bowl.

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Chill Friday nights with a book and my furbabies.
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And some more scenery that I am in love with. I love going to the tower at this park. It’s so high up and you can see the tops of trees and it’s the best.

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I love random adventures and amazing scenery. All these places were literally right down the road from where I live. I love the area I live in because it always has great places to go and just relax and take in the beautiful of the world. I think most people live busy lives and forget to just look around and appreciate life and everything around us.

Were you able to do anything exciting or nice this weekend? Even jumping into a new world in a new book is great too!