Life · travel

September At Last

In my last post I expressed all my disdain for cranberries, chronic pain, and depression. Let’s talk about some positive things this time, shall we?

It’s finally September! You know what that means! I’m sure a few of you are yelling “Back to school” and while you’re technically right, it’s way more exciting than that. (Although, I’m not a parent. Maybe back to school time is a huge relief for you. I’m not judging.) September is the beginning of Halloween season!!! Those who have been following my blog for a few years now know that I am obsessed with Halloween. Why, you ask? BECAUSE IT’S THE GREATEST TIME OF THE YEAR. Over the next 2 months I’ll be posting lots of Fall/Halloween reading recommendations, as well as other related topics.


…Consider yourselves warned.

In other exciting news, Boyfriend and I are going on a much needed vacation next week. It’s been an incredibly stressful couple of months with all that’s going on at work and my mental health dragging me down. I am more than ready to get away for a while. We were originally trying it plan a trip to Paris, but, alas, the stars (and prices) were not aligning, so we will be going to Portland and Seattle instead. I loved my first visit to Portland and can’t wait to get to explore more if it this time. I promise, there will be lots of pictures from the stacks at Powell’s, mountain views, and delicious food when we get back.


Lastly, I have a very important announcement that I need to share with you all: My cat, Merlin, is adorable.

You’re welcome.

Books · food · Life · travel

How YOU Doin’?

I realized the other day that it’s been quite a while since I’ve done one of my Monday How You Doin’? posts. For a while I didn’t feel like I really had that much to share, so I just put HYD on the back burner for a little bit.

A Beautiful Escape

This past weekend I drove to Asheville. I’ve been experiencing a ton of kidney pain lately and it’s been making me one cranky bitch, so I figured a visit to one of my favorite places would cheer me up. And it did. I paid a visit to my favorite bookstore, ate soup dumplings, and had fun wandering around all the other funky shops and art galleries. Driving through the mountains always gives me inspiration and helps me to clear my head. How can such a beautiful view lead to anything but feelings of contentment?


Cat Yoga

In an effort to improve my physical and mental health I’ve gone and done something out of the ordinary. I signed up for yoga. *horror movie scream* There’s nothing wrong with yoga, but it’s never really been my thing. I appreciate it as a form of exercise, but it’s always looked somewhat boring to me. That and I really don’t like the spiritual side of it that often gets shoved at you. In the last few months I recognized how much my flexibility and strength has decreased now that I can’t do my pole exercises as much. I’ve been stretching a little at home to try to improve this, but I don’t feel like it’ll be enough. About a week ago I saw that the local cat cafe does yoga classes once a week. You get to do yoga and socialize with kitties at the same time. Perfect. Even if I’m a little bored with yoga, at least I’ll have the cats as a motivator to keep showing up.


I must confess that I am not the most graceful person. My first cat yoga class will be this evening and I am expecting to fall over and embarrass myself a few times.

What I’m currently reading


So…how you doin’?


What a Tart

Greetings! I realized this morning that I missed my How YOU doin’? Monday post. Things have been so crazy lately that I can’t even keep track of what day it is!

So, How YOU doin’ this week?

Boyfriend returned home this weekend after his week-long family vacation. While having the house to myself for a little while was nice, I’m super glad he’d back. Prior to Boyfriend’s arrival, a visitor showed up and decided to spend the week with me.

This is Ditty:


Don’t let that sweet little face fool you. Ditty is not super happy about staying with me, mainly because of the other cats in the house. She has been expressing her displeasure with the situation by making Gremlin noises at the other cats and picking fights with Merlin at 4 a.m. (Despite her bitchy behavior, I love this little Gremlin.)

Monday, after a long, exhausting day at work, I decided to come home and bake something. (Relax? Pffft. What does that even mean?) I got a new set of mini tart pans recently and I’ve been dying to try them out. These little beauties were the result. They have a shortbread crust, chocolate pastry cream, and fresh raspberries. They were so yummy. ❤

I hope you’re all off to a good start this week.


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Black Cat Blue Sea Awards

The lovely miss Ally nominated me for the Black Cat Blue Sea Awards. I have no idea who created this award, but I love the name of it because it sounds somewhat nonsensical. Like, why would a black cat be out at sea? Cats don’t even like water. Unless it’s a pirate cat. OMG is it a pirate cat?! If I had a pirate cat I would name him ARRRRRnold.


The Rules:

  • Answer three questions posed to you by the person who nominated you
  • Ask three questions
  • Nominate up to 8 others

The Questions:

  • Are there any topics that make you automatically interested in a book? – Yessss. Magic, pirates, supernatural beings (faeries, mermaids, etc.), creepy old houses, cemeteries, and fairy tale retellings all grab my attention.
  • Favourite book you’d never admit is a favourite? – I can’t think of any that I am particularly embarrassed about. I typically avoid talking about middle grade books though when talking about favorites because people get weird about it.

“Wait, isn’t that a kid’s book?”


  • Are there any authors you’d never read anything from? Why? – Several, actually. Mainly because they write about topics I don’t enjoy, like erotica and religious fiction.

My Questions:

  • Is there any one topic or trope that instantly ruins a book for you?
  • What would be your ideal book crossover (Two unrelated books becoming part of the same universe)?
  • What is the most recent book you acquired?
  • Bonus Question: If you had a pirate cat, what would its name be?

My Nominees:

Bionic Book Worm

Reading With Rendz

Reading by the Moonlight

Book Princess Reviews

Jade Writes Books



People (Like you!)



Song of the Millenial Cats

In last week’s post, Stuff I’m Thinking About, I pondered what Boyfriend’s cat could possibly want to buy with all the change he’s been stealing off the nightstand. A few days later I figured it out…

Apparently Ash and Merlin have also fallen victim to the avocado craze, like the rest of us. This could potentially be a problem. Merlin and I are going to have to sit down and have a serious chat about his spending habits. He’s never going to be able to afford a bigger litter box if he keeps buying avocados.

*sigh* What’s a cat mom to do?


A Wizard Cat’s Birthday

This weekend my sweet little Merlin turned one! I’m actually not sure of his exact birth date, but based on the age he was when I got him I figured this was close.

We celebrated with chicken, treats, and lots of snuggles. He was pretty worn out after all that partying. ❤

Books · Life

Bookstores and Cat Wizards

Yesterday was the loveliest of days! I took the day off work to take a day trip to Asheville, NC. Asheville is one of my favorite places in the world. It’s home to my favorite independent bookstore, Malaprops, plus tons of fabulous restaurants, antique and vintage stores, shops of all sorts, art galleries, music venues and theaters, breweries, etc. I’ve always wanted to move to Asheville. I hope to make it a reality someday. Just need a bunch of money and a really good plan first…

A few people have asked about Merlin the cat wizard recently, so I thought I’d give you all an update. Merlin has been living with me for 2 months now. I hate to say this, but I don’t think he’s adjusted very well yet. You can see in the following pictures just how miserable he is.




They fell asleep holding hands and my heart melted all over the place. ❤

I hope you are all having a great day, wherever you are. We could all use more of those in our lives, no?

I’m off to see the wizard.


Battle of the Cat Wizards

Happy Monday! I am super pleased that it’s a holiday and that I don’t have to be at work today. That means there’s more time for reading, writing, and relaxation.

I want to tell you all about the excitement that’s been happening at the house lately. For several months now we’ve gotten periodic visits from a sweet little gray kitty, who we refer to as Gandalf. A few days ago Gandalf showed up to say hello and was surprised to see that there was a new kitty in our window. Merlin was clearly pissed by this other wizard cat’s audacity. He sat in the window for several hours and growled at Gandalf, clearly trying to defend his castle. They’ve been doing this on and off for days now.

It’s an wizard cat showdown and I don’t know who’s going to win. Seriously guys, the suspense is killing me.

Life · Uncategorized

Meet Merlin 

I would like to introduce you guys to my new kitty baby, Merlin. I adopted him this weekend from the Humane Society. (This was the Christmas present from my boyfriend that I hinted at earlier.) He’s 8 months old and I fell in love with him pretty much instantly. His name was Nash, but I’ve decided to call him Merlin instead. 

Yesterday was his first day in his new home. I’d say he’s adjusting well. 😊