Tuesday, June 30, 2015

June 2015 Monthly Recap

a look at how this past month went in my life, both on & off the blog
(previously known as Reflect & Renew)

what happened.

1. Course culminatings & exams. WHAT A CRAZY MONTH JUNE HAS BEEN. It has been crazy and hectic and so busy. I feel like I’ve just been going at it non-stop and now that I’m finally on vacation, it’s simultaneously AMAZING but also disconcerting because why don’t I have any obligations right now. Relatively speaking, I don’t think this year was as bad as last year, mostly because I already knew what to expect. But also like I don’t remember a thing about how I managed to complete all my stuff because I had way worse time management skills last year so like… how did I even pass all my exams? I still don’t have great time management skills (something I’m working on…) so for a large part of June, I was frazzled with all the work I had to complete. I feel like I crammed a lot for my exams but I don't know, I still got good marks although most of them didn't change (increase or decrease) so they were the same marks I had going into my finals which is good I guess since they were in the 90s anyway. I'm happy with my final result but also I can't help but wonder what I would have been able to achieve if I had better time management skills and had an actual schedule and gave myself enough time to study for all my exams and prepare. But anyway they're good marks so I'm happy, I just know I have to work on my time management for next year. Speaking of which...

2. JUNIOR YEAR OMG. I can't believe junior year is NEXT YEAR. I am so fucking scared. But also excited because I love all the courses I'm taking (regretting my decision not to take physics even though I'm not planning on going into science, I just feel like now even if I did want to do it, I can't and I don't like not having options). If you've been through junior year, can you please offer me words of wisdom? Because I am slightly freaking out.

3. SICK. I was sick again this year during exams. It happened last year and it happened again this year. My aunt thinks it might be like muscle memory where your body just remembers what happens and falls into that habit. If so, I AM SO SCREWED because this means I’m going to be sick for all my exams during high school. I’m better now but still it was kinda stressful because I had a horrible fever / sore throat / runny nose / just flu in general two days before my history exam and I was just so nim on doing anything. I didn’t even have the energy to watch TV or read a book. All I wanted to do was sleep but I COULDN’T because I had an essay to write the next day that I had to prep for. OH MISERY.

4. NHL playoffs / finals. I should shut up about this but basically my team, the Chicago Blackhawks, won the Stanley Cup and I am happy. But also sad because June was an amazing month filled with exciting hockey and now it’s all over and I have to wait until like October. What am I going to do with my life?

5. Haliburton. I went to Haliburton two weekends ago and it was MISERY. I hate going north where there are just trees and nothing else because while the scenery is gorgeous, THE MOSQUITOES ARE NOT. And the fact that there is nothing around me, nothing to do, is not. I am just a city girl through and through but also like seriously. The mosquitoes are enough for me to call it quits forever and ever. They honestly like me so much and I get bitten so much all the time and it is the worst. I got three mosquito bites on one eyelid one day and my eye just swelled up so much that it was basically just a slit. Seriously I am convinced the only thing good about northern Ontario / cottage country is Kawartha Dairy which almost made up for the rest of my misery. It is the best ice cream ever oh my god. SO GOOD.

6. RELAXING. Now that school is over, I am not doing anything except locking myself in my room and relaxing. Because finally I have time to do everything that I’ve wanted to do during the school year but didn’t’ have time for: watching TV, listening to music, reading and of course, NAPPING. These past few days doing nothing has been amazing and I am so excited to continue to do nothing. YES.

7. Summer vacation next month. I'm also really using the time I have NOW to relax but next month I'll be away on vacation for a month. And I'm parts excited but also parts dreading it and this is going to sound so FIRST WORLD PROBLEMS and it is but I'm going to Shanghai mostly to have a little tour around and they basically block all social media AND THAT MEANS TWITTER AND BLOGGER AND GMAIL so basically I will be cut off from contact to the western world in every form and that is something I am not excited about because I practically LIVE off social media and the internet. So let's see how that goes. 

8. Blogging mojo back again? One really great thing I've managed to accomplish this month was a blogging schedule / system. And it's been working super well for me so far which makes me really happy. I'm excited to be getting back into the swing of things and starting up routines again like these monthly recap posts. You'll also notice that I changed the name for this as it was previously called Reflect & Renew. It was something I started back when I was still blogging at Random Reads and to be honest, I think the name is quite dumb now so I kinda just wanted to change it to something more standard and you'll notice some shifts to the layout as well. And THIS is another reason why I'm sad to leave for July. There's no Blogger in China because it's blocked which means just when I've FINALLY gotten back into the swing of blogging, just when I've FINALLY started to be excited about blogging again, I have to stop for a month-long break because I'm on vacation and give up precious time to blog because before I know it, it'll be September again and I'll have to go back to school and be so busy and exhausted I'll have no time to blog and HONESTLY I JUST. Oh well (quietly sobs because why).

monthly playlist.

I don’t have a monthly playlist for June because it was one of those months where I listened to very little music because podcasts took over my life again. But if you want to know the music I did listen to, just head over to this post because that was the only music I was really listening to as my life was ALSO consumed by course finals and exams and these were the albums that got me through finals (also Kendrick Lamar's To Pimp a Butterfly which was not included in the post but definitely deserves a shoutout for keeping me sane during those crazy weeks).

currently reading, just finished & up next.

I'm taking it slow by reading one book at a time. I just finished Magnolia by Kristi Cook which I talked about in my monthly wrap-up and now I'm reading The Second Summer of the Sisterhood by Ann Brashares as part of my reread of The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants series. Up next, I have a bunch of books I need to read. Honestly I have a physical TBR of more than 20 books right now and I don't know how I'll get through all of them. Still figuring out what book I'll read after the Second Summer, I'm kinda going off on what I'll be in the mood for afterwards but most likely I'll be moving on to Wanderlove by Kirsten Hubbard or Bras & Broomsticks by Sarah Mlynowski.

new blog finds.

I find so many new blogs every month so I thought I'd include this new section just to show you some of the amazing new blogs (bookish and otherwise) I've been reading that you should check out too if you haven't already!

challenge updates.

  • The 2015 Goodreads Challenge: I finally took the leap and changed my goal from 70 to 100, even though it was 100 all along - I just didn't want to get my hopes up too high! But yes, I changed it and I'm feeling good. I'm still ahead which is fab and let's hope I can keep this up.
  • 2015 Debut Author Challenge: ONE BOOK. HUZZAH (The Boy Next Door by Katie Van Ark)
  • Flights of Fantasy: 4 more books since my last check-in which puts me at 9 in total.
  • 2015 Bookish Bingo Challenge: To be honest I have not updated this in a long time so... let's hold off on this until I actually get to seeing what I've done so far.
  • 2015 Classics Challenge: 2 books thanks to mandatory English assigned novels (well, one was a play).
  • 2015 Contemporary Challenge: I read 8 MORE books since the last time so that puts me at 19.
  • 2015 Discussion Challenge: Err definitely not doing so well on the one a month thing but I wrote one this month so that oughta count.. I'll work on this guys.
  • 2015 TBR Pile: 20 books in total so far.
  • Popsugar 2015 Reading Challenge: Yeah I haven't looked at this really either so let's wait on updating this.
  • Fairytale Retelling Challenge: Haha I have two! Even though they aren't actually fairy tales but I think other retellings are okay too so yeah, I have 2!
  • Reread Challenge: 8 books in total!
  • Dive Into Diversity: I'm not very good at this challenge mostly because I am so confused when it comes down to actually determining what books count as diverse and which books don't. As of right now I have 4 but I don't even think half of them count so.
  • Around the World Challenge: For this, you can view my map on the Challenge page as I update this regularly.

highlights of the runaway reader.

what to expect in july.

I'm going away for a month in July but I will have some posts scheduled while I'm away - at least one per week - so you can look out for those!

That's my June for you! How did your Junes go? Any exciting things to share? Any interesting books read? Or were you basically miserable the entire month LIKE ME working on finals and stressing over exams?

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