Monthly Wrap-Up

MAY 2019 | Wrap-Up

What’s this?! My first monthly wrap-up of 2019?!?! I know it’s been a while, but I’m so happy to say that I’m back! May has certainly been a time…

In May I read a total of 4 books:

  1. The Happiness Advantage by Shawn Achor
  2. Food by Gertrude Stein
  3. To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han
  4. Mary Poppins Opens the Door by P.L. Travers

My favorite book this month was To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han. I watched the movie over spring break with some friends and loved it, and I think that positive memory definitely shaped this reading experience too. I’m excited to read the rest of the series at some point this summer! Review coming soon.

+ TO WATCH: The only thing I actually watched this month was the new Avengers: Endgame, and let me tell you: what a RIDE. I cried basically throughout the entire thing, especially at the end. (If you’ve seen it, you know what I mean!) It’s strange to think that this means goodbye to some of the characters I’ve grown up with, but there’s also an exciting silver lining: new characters! New stories! An ever-evolving and changing franchise! Definitely recommend watching it if you’re a Marvel fan.

+ TO LISTEN TO: In light of some things that happened recently in my personal life, I’ve opted not to listen to music on my commute back and forth to work every day (can’t get too emotional with those memories…). Instead, I’ve been listening to audiobooks, which has been really nice. Not only do I get a lot of reading done, but it also makes the ride go by a lot quicker.

+ TO EAT: Recently I made lemon and ginger cookies and they are so good. I used this recipe and they were super easy to bake. Will definitely be making these again soon!

+ TO GO: For the last time as a student, I’m going to have to say Wheaton College in Norton, Massachusetts. I’ve made such incredible friends there and have so many amazing memories of this tiny campus.

May was a rollercoaster of emotional ups and downs for me. I successfully defended my honors thesis, graduated from Wheaton College with a BA in English, and said goodbye (or “see you later!” as I like to think of it!) to so many of my close friends. I’ve also recently went through some pretty $#!tty stuff in my personal life, which is not fun. But thanks to the help of my family and friends (and my love for books!) I’m getting through slowly but surely. So in lieu of me going into any details, please enjoy these photos of my month of May!

Am I wearing an outfit made of drafts of my thesis? Why, yes I am!
Me and my finished thesis!
After Holi on the last days of classes…. very wet, but very colorful!
The roses they gave us to hold during graduation.
I graduated!

 Here are some posts from other bloggers that I’ve loved this month: 

Here are some notable posts from my blog this past month:

How was your month of May? What was the best book you read? Did you do anything really fun or exciting? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY

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College

Done with my English major?!?!

It’s done! I graduated from Wheaton with a BA in English!

It’s a strange feeling, being done with my English major after so many years of looking forward to and working towards it. I’ve been incredibly lucky to have had this opportunity to dive into the study of literature, especially for an intensive year at the University of Oxford. I took classes in so many different kinds of literature. I wrote an Honors Thesis over the course of an academic year. I had the support of amazing professors who are as kind as they are brilliant. And I will miss every second of it.

But the great thing about being an English major is that you never really stop being one; in a way, I feel as though I’ll always be a student of literature. I think that’s part of the reason why I started this blog in the first place so many years ago, and why I aim on continuing to update it as I enter this new chapter (yes, pun definitely intended) of my life. Just because I’ve earned my degree doesn’t mean I’ll stop reading books, thinking critically about them, or staying in tune with new perspectives and ways of looking at them. And what’s a major without the other people involved? Whose to say that librarians, past professors, friends, family, and fellow bloggers can’t also be my “classmates” in this endeavor?

So this is to say that although I’m going to law school and although I’m technically done being an English major, I’m not leaving that part of me behind. Instead, it will just take a bit of a different form.

Here.

What sorts of feelings did you experience when you completed your English degree? How do you continue to keep bookishness in your life beyond the classroom? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY

Monthly Wrap-Up

June 2015 Wrap-Up

the orchard experience

June is a great month, for several reasons. First (and most importantly): SCHOOL IS OVER!! Second, the weather starts warming up to a reasonably nice temperature (bye bye New England winter!). Lastly, you have the entire summer ahead of you to be super excited about! This June in particular was crazy for me, but in so many good ways!

Bookish News

In June I read a total of 4 books: 

  1. The Emancipation of a Buried Man by Eddy Gilmore
  2. Wonder by R.J. Palacio (the Spanish translation)
  3. The Girl Who Played with Fire by Stieg Larsson
  4. I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson

The Girl Who Played with Fire by Stieg LarssonThese were all really great books, so choosing a favorite is extremely difficult! But I’m going have to say that the best book I read this month was The Girl Who Played with Fire by Stieg Larsson. It’s such a suspenseful, gripping novel!! I could not put it down, and whenever I wasn’t reading it I couldn’t stop thinking about it and trying to figure out who the murderer was. I gave it a four star rating (you can read my quick review on Goodreads).

Full reviews of these books will be posted soon, so stay tuned!

Personal News

My oh my, where should I begin?! June was an incredibly exciting and busy month for me. I graduated from high school, attended orientation at Wheaton College (the one in Norton, MA) and went on a road trip to West Virginia with my family. I celebrated birthdays, attended award ceremonies, and even met my future college roommate! There are exciting things to come, and I cannot wait to share them with you all!

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A view of Boston, MA from my senior cruise.
My graduation cap- yup, those are Scrabble letters!
My graduation cap- yup, those are Scrabble letters!

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One of my dogs sitting outside- isn’t she adorable? 😀

Blogging News

Here are some of my more notable posts from this month (aka, ones that are out of the norm):

You also may have noticed a few more fancy images and graphics on my blog this month. That’s because I’ve decided to learn how to play around with fonts and graphics, and I’m having a lot of fun with it!

I’ve discovered so many wonderful blogs and bloggers this month that are new to me, and it’s great to look at my bloglovin’ feed and see an abundance of interesting, hilarious, and exciting posts waiting for me to read. Next week I’ll be uploading a Liebster Award post that will highlight some of these lovely blogs, so be on the lookout for that!

So long, June- hello, July!!

I hope you all had a wonderful June and have an even better July! What are some things you did or books you read in June? Would you be interested in knowing more about anything in this post? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY

Favorites

June Favorites: Road Trips, Lost, and Amazing Cake

June Favorites-4

Oh, lovely, lovely June. Why must you go so soon? (Unintentional rhyme, but I’ll go with it!) June is a great month because the weather gets a million times nicer, school ends, and you have the entire summer ahead of you to be excited about. This June in particular was an excellent one, so I have plenty of favorites to share with you all!

  • What I've beenlistening to_“Flightless Bird, American Mouth” by Iron & Wine: This song is so relaxing and beautiful- perfect for those nostalgic summer nights!
  • “Nine in the Afternoon” by Panic! At the Disco: I love singing along to this one on car rides with friends. It’s catchy, clever, and has that awesome Panic flair!
  • “Lost in My Mind” by The Head and the Heart: I first heard this song a few summers ago and ever since then it has become one of my very favorite summer songs. There’s something about it that never fails to put a smile on my face and remind me of all the wonderful summer memories I’ve made over the years. It has such an earthy feel to it, too!

What I've been watching_

  • Lost: I’ve been absolutely hooked on watching lost this past month, and IT’S SO GOOD! I wrote about it earlier in the month in my post titled In Which I Confess My Recent Obsession with Lost. I’m almost done with the first season and I love it so much! If you’d like to be updated on my progress and my reactions to various episodes, be sure to follow the hashtag #hollywatcheslost on Twitter and follow me @peanutfreeisme.
  • Jurassic World: HOLY COW, PEOPLE. THIS MOVIE IS FANTASTIC. I’ve never seen the original movies, but I loved Michael Crichton’s novel Jurassic Park so I suspected that I would enjoy this movie. I definitely did not think I would love it this much, though! Everything about it was amazing: the special effects, the suspenseful plot, and Chris Pratt, of course! I plan on posting a full review of this movie in the near future, so stay tuned!

Jurassic World

What I've been doing_

  • Road Tripping: I adore a good road trip. They’re awesome because you get to travel to new and exciting places all while making memories with the people you love. In fact, as you read this I am in West Virginia for my brother’s soccer tournament. I’ve never been to West Virginia before and it’s about a twelve-hour drive from my house, so it should be interesting! I’m sure I’ll have some updates about it when I get back.
  • Yoga: I’ve always wanted to make yoga a part of my daily (or more regular) routine, but a) I’ve never had the time and b) I never really knew how to do it properly. Since the start of the summer, however, I’ve been making an effort to try to do some yoga each morning. I found an awesome Youtube channel called Yoga with Adriene, and she has so many great videos explaining how to do certain sequences and moves. I love how she walks you through them in detail and then shows you how to do it more fluidly. I’m definitely not flexible, but I’m slowly getting better!

Yoga with Adriene

What I've been doing_-2

  • CAKE. As you probably have already guessed from the name of this blog, I’m allergic to nuts. (Shocker, right?) Because of this I usually stay away from anything made in a bakery, since it’s bound to be cross-contaminated with something nutty. But there’s this wonderful peanut-free bakery near where my grandparents live, and for my graduation party they brought me this huge, amazing cake. IT WAS SO GOOD, LET ME TELL YOU. As lovely as it looks, it tasted even better!IMG_1280

June was a wonderful month for me, and I can’t wait to see what good old July has in store!

What are some of your June Favorites? What do you think of mine? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY

Rambles

I’M FREE! (AKA I’ve Finally Graduated from High School!)

I'M FREE!(AKA I've finally graduated

People, my graduation day has officially come and gone, and I am FREE AT LAST!!

dancing gatsby

kelly kapoor day is bananas gif

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For the longest time it felt as though that day would never come, and then suddenly it was here and now it’s then. I still can’t believe that I’m done with high school for good. There are certainly some things that I’ll miss: my amazing friends, the wonderful teachers I’ve had over the years, and the familiarity of classmates and daily classmates. These first few days of summer have had me in a bit of a nostalgic mood, but I’m becoming more and more excited for the future with each passing moment. I’ve got the whole summer ahead of me to do whatever I please! And then I’m off to college!

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High school was a mix of ups and downs for me. I’ve made some great memories with friends and had some fantastic teachers, but there are many things about my particular high school that I really disliked. Overall, though, I believe that I made the best of my four years there and had experiences that will last me a lifetime.

It feels so strange to have an entire summer to do whatever I please. Usually I’m bogged down by summer homework and deadlines, but not this summer! I feel so free and light, it’s fantastic!

Goodbye class of 2015, and thank you! Hello class of 2019!

Do you have any plans for this summer? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY

Quotes

QUOTE: Mark Twain

IN THE

“I have never let my schooling interfere with my education.”  ~ Mark Twain

It’s official: yesterday I graduated from high school! This quote reflects how I felt the majority of the time in high school, because most of my teachers either didn’t care about teaching or were just really ineffective at actually helping students learn. Many times I felt as though my classes were preventing me from learning valuable information because I was stuck doing so much “busy work”. I really looking forward to college, where hopefully I will learn material that is more applicable to my future goals.

Have any of you ever experienced this frustration with school or college? What quotes have you discovered recently? Let me know in the comments section below!

Yours,

HOLLY