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2018, a Recap

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I wouldn't say 2018 was the best year. As I look back at past years, I start to wonder what I *would* consider a great year. Does the weight of what's happening in our country affect me that much (and, yes, I think it does). Am I at a point now where more sad things happen--deaths of friends' parents, people in my life having health problems, and as I take on more adult responsibilities, life is a lot less carefree than it used to be.

That being said, there were still notable things this year, so let's take a look back . . .

Bests: Book: A Man Called Ove, Frederik Bakmann  Movie: To All the Boys I Loved Before (note: this is a Netflix movie. And I LOVE it) Song: The Middle by Zedd, and Younger by A Great Big World TV Shows: Queer Eye, The Americans, One Day at a Time, Superstore
[UPDATE]Episode of a TV Show: Insecure "High-Like" Musical (I saw four so I feel like I need a favorite): Come From Away (it is a CLOSE second to Hamilton in my heart, I saw it twice, I…

The Last 2018 Bookshelf Entries

I ended up reading a few more books before the year was over, recapped here:

Personal History, Katharine Graham: This has been on my to-read list for awhile, as it's widely considered the creme de la creme of memoirs (and is Pulitzer Prize winning). Graham is the former publisher of The Washington Post, who succeeded her father and husband in that position. She was a witness to so much history, and her matter-of-fact take on things is fascinating. Don't get me wrong, she grew up very privileged and wealthy and as such had many doors opened to her. However this also shows you that money doesn't protect you from life's tragedies. Some of the book is skimmable, but it really is fascinating.
For fans of: The Post, boss ladies of yesteryear

The Luckiest Girl Alive, by Jessica Knoll: This book was on many "must read" lists over the last few years, and I finally got around to it. I have to admit, I really didn't know what this book was about, and it was not the bo…

Holiday Feelings

I've done holiday favorite posts in the past, so instead this year, I'm sharing things just on my mind this holiday season. (Note, I started this post two weeks ago, but am not updating it to past tense now)

1. I am in the midst of many a holiday shipping debacle. Mainly, that packages seem to get to a distribution center and stay there for 5 days. Needless to say, every single shipping deadline has been missed.

2. I'm rewatching The Family Stone as I type this. Man, do I have a complicated relationship with this movie. I used to LOVE it, and was always surprised I was in the minority. But, in the past few years, I've been struck by how much everyone in the movie would benefit from therapy. And better communication skills. So I spend half my time armchair-diagnosing people, and half my time enjoying the scenery.

3. A group of girlfriends and I do a "Favorite Things" gift exchange--rather than White Elephant, we put together a gift of $20 or less of a favorite…

On the Bookshelf in 2018: Part 2

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(Catch up with Part 1 here)

Picking back up with the rest of the books I've read this year. Note, I'm now including who I think would like this book at the end of each synopsis (if I have an idea), and have added that to my previous post.

Hey Ladies!: The Story of 8 Best Friends, 1 Year, and Way, Way Too Many Emails, by Michelle Markowitz: I read this poolside in Cancun, which is the appropriate setting for this book. It's light, it's fun, it's eye-rolly. It's told through emails and texts amongst a group of friends as one gets married and the rest are involved (or not involved) in the wedding and live their lives. Of course it's set in NYC (women live elsewhere, authors of the world).
Good for: chic-lit fans, people with friend groups who rack up the reply-alls

Beartown, by Fredrik Backman: The same author as A Man Called Ove, but a VERY different book. A small hockey town is rocked by a crime committed by one of the players, and the book unravels it from eve…

On the Bookshelf in 2018, Part 1

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I didn't feel like I was reading a lot this year, until I took a gander at my Good Reads list and saw that I was up to 20 books for the year! I've kind of hit a lull at the moment, and am planning on re-reading the last 4 Harry Potter books, so this would be a good place for me to share my list and thoughts:

The Woman in Cabin 10, Ruth Ware: This book was clearly trying to be like Girl on the Train. I read this on a cruise back in February, not knowing the "cabin" in the title was a cruise cabin, haha. It was ok, but I tend to not love books that are trying to be like other popular books.
Good for: Someone who can't get enough of The Girl on the Train-esque books.

All Our Wrong Todays, Elan Mastai: This was a book I really shouldn't have liked. It's sci-fi fantasy and a bit technical, but I ended up being really fascinated by it. Basically, thanks to a time travel experiment gone wrong, a man ends up in our version of 2016, not the futuristic version that he…

Work it Out

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This title is also my workout Pinterest board title. That board currently has 135 "pins". Everything from workout videos to treadmill circuits to "no equipment needed" circuits to toning guides for every part of the body.

I have worked out consistently since college. This really started my second semester senior year, when the "wellness" class I took was "group exercise". Three days a week I went to our brand new, shiny, workout center and did either step aerobics, weight lifting, spinning (my first time taking spin), kickboxing, pilates (this nearly killed me, I was hungover). I did all of this for class credit. It was a great routine to get into, and I started to like a lot of different types of exercise.

Fast forward to graduating. I suddenly had all this free time after work, was still living at home, and was nostalgic. So I bought an alumni membership to said fancy workout center and would workout after work 2-3 times a week. Just on my own…

Summer Wrap-Up

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As I write this, it's rained all weekend and it's currently in the 60s outside, so it really feels like summer is over.

And what a summer it was. My sixth (!) in DC! And, it wasn't unbearably hot or humid for a long stretch of time, so it definitely ranks as one of the more pleasant ones in my tenure here.

A bit of a breakdown of the summer:

Travel
At one point, I was traveling every two weeks (are we surprised?). Some highlights:

LA/Denver Work Trip: It took three airlines to get there and back, but this was a fun break at the end of June. I went to LA for a media day with our celebrity spokesperson, and then straight to Denver for six days for a conference (plus one more day for fun). I LOVED my time in Denver--the weather was perfect, I adjusted to the altitude (except for stairs, I was winded EVERY TIME), and really enjoyed seeing a lot of the city. But man, at the end of this trip, I was really sick of hotel rooms. Fourth of July in Pennsylvania: Leo and I took our firs…