As we head into the holiday season, I find myself drawn more and more to reflecting on the year and reflecting on the people, feelings, and things I’m grateful for this year. Obviously November emphasizes this of course with Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving this year was a fun fare. I went over to my boyfriend’s aunt’s place for Thanksgiving and ate so much food. I’ve never had the traditional western Thanksgiving food so much till now. There was turkey, vegetables, cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes and of course, pumpkin pie. For dinner, I went over to my boyfriend’s maternal side and ate more.. ham, turkey, creamed corn and 4 different kinds of cake plus flan. This side had a mixture of Asian food as well like sticky rice. I had so much food and it was all so good. I then had a Friendsgiving the next day with even more good food. I had the turkey obviously but also some lasagna, spinach and artichoke dip, vegetables, and 4 different types of pie!! and one apple tart (that I was in charge of and turned out much better than I thought it would be considering my dough would not even cover the pot)! We then played some Mario Party which is actually a very good party game and the games are very easy to learn.
It’s easy for me as an anxious person to dwell on the negatives as I’ve been want to do these past few weeks what with waiting for schools to (still) reply to me and some rejections and just my all around anxious and dissociating self. So here is me writing about some things that I am grateful for. I am thankful for my health, as frustrating as my mental health is, I still have a lot to be thankful for. I’m thankful for the exponential self growth I have achieved this year. I’m thankful for the soft sound of my fingers hitting the keyboard at work as a patient spews out her problems. I’m thankful for nice fitting jeans with the perfect top crowned with the perfect dark makeup. I’m thankful for therapy that I just started a few weeks ago. I’m thankful for the sweet rush of sweetness when you drink your first sip of boba. I’m thankful for warm, cozy nights in bed reading a book. I’m thankful for the cute clip clopping of my horse’s hooves while playing Stardew Valley and cuddling with Nathan under the covers. I’m thankful for my friends who I can reach out to anytime and feel as though I just talked to them yesterday. Whenever I talk to them I feel full, I feel whole. I have a ton more to be grateful for and I hope it encourages me to be more positive in the future.
Cravings by Chrissy Tiegen 4/5 -What I appreciate about this cookbook is the unique flair that makes it feel so personal to Chrissy. She injects a lot of her trademark humor and family history. The recipes are actually very easy and not time consuming and there’s variety of different kinds of dishes from breakfast to party dishes to Thai dishes (she’s part Thai). She wanted to emphasize the redoability (that’s not a word) of the dishes and I think a lot of the dishes you would want to do again. The pictures of the food are lovely. I haven’t tried any of the recipes but I sure want to.
I am, I am, I am by Maggie O’Farrell 3/5 – O’Farrell recounts 17 instances of near death that she has experienced in this book. I appreciated her analysis of her immediate reactions to the these near death experiences that gives an instant reaction to what she was going through. I have two favorite stories in this collection. The first one is about the delivery of her first child. Prior to this, she was advised by doctors she must have a mandatory C-section or experience major birth complications due to her medical condition. She switched to a doctor who looked down upon those who had C-sections and refused to give her one despite her desperate insistence and she recounts the loneliness she felt even when she was with lots of hospital staff. She remembers feeling the violence simmering underneath when she narrowly escapes a stranger who turns out to be a murderer having killed a person a day after he met her. My biggest issue with the book was that it grew very repetitive and dull especially near the end. The stories started to just feel more like exposition than an analysis of death and life.
Becoming by Michelle Obama 4/5- Review to come. But I loved it!
Emma Approved Season 2 (C)- I’m kind of sad this show has been cancelled due to the lack of patreon donors. But I definitely wasn’t the person I am now when I first started watching this show but I felt this time around, it lacked cohesiveness and plot. I definitely didn’t really like the mockumentary style because although we do get to see more natural settings for people to be in such as outside the office where we see more of Mr. Collins without him posing for the camera but I actually did like that people had to watch what they said in front of the camera when they were in the room. It added a certain tension. Maybe it was too late for this reboot to occur and there were too many changes ruining the nostalgia factor.
The Haunting of Hill House (A) – Full review here.
I’m so proud of myself for watching so many movies this month. I probably watched more this month than the other months combined sadly.
Searching (A) – This movie was a completely great surprise for me. Probably my favorite of the month. I really liked how social media and internet culture was used in this movie. I also really liked how it kept leading you to believe one thing but it was actually another. The ending kind of blew my mind a little. I also appreciated that the thriller took the time to explore a father-daughter dynamic. The main character feels as though he knew his daughter but as he continues his search for her, he realizes he doesn’t actually know that much about her.
Idiocracy (C)- This movie is starting to look like real life more and more these days. Thankfully it is only a movie for now though a biting satire on consumerism, instant gratification and blind following. Besides the humor and satire, I found the plot to be painfully linear, the side characters especially the female to be written irrelevantly (sadly) and the development to be mediocre at best. It was interesting to see Terry Crews as president though.
Wreck It Ralph (A-)- I completely adore this movie. It is still as fun, original, and heartwarming as it was when I first watched it about 6 years ago. The sugar rush theme is so addicting. I love the theme of the movie, about finding who you really are despite being literally programmed otherwise. The characters are so endearing. I still want to watch the sequel although I am hesitant as I was burned earlier this year with The Incredibles 2.
Mrs. Doubtfire (A)- This movie is really funny! I had my suspicions that it was going to be full of sexist bullshit but ironically it wasn’t that bad aside from the usual making-fun-of-female-parts-when-a-man-dresses-as-a-woman. In fact throughout the movie, he has to learn how to be more caring and more attentive to his children and ex-wife something he didn’t do before. I also liked that the ending didn’t wrap up too neatly thankfully. Robin Williams does amazing impressions and his British accent is hilarious.
Kill Bill (B)
Kill Bill is very unique stylistically and I absolutely adore the cinematography with its many shots seen from above the subject. Tarantino definitely gets some of the inspiration in this movie from Asian martial movies and a little bit of anime as well. I’m a bit squeamish when it comes to extreme violence in movies so I have to admit I covered my eyes for a little bit of this movie so it’s not like I’ll watch it again but I’m glad I did at least once. Although, of course, the understanding now about the sexual assault scandal of Uma Thurman and Harvey Weinstein who worked on the Bulmovie stains the experience.
Ariana Grande – thank u, next
What can I say? Another day, another Ariana Grande repeat. I also really liked the James Corden remake of it.
Youtube – Amandarachlee
So I’ve recently went down the bullet journal rabbit hole. And I freaking love it; I’ve bought my journal, crayola supertips, the tombow dual brush pens, the whole gambit. It’s soothing and calming and literally all my favorite things: doodling, handlettering, and just scribbling down things such as to do lists or keeping track of the books and movies I’ve read or watched. Amanda’s youtube channel really inspires me and her methods are so simple that anyone can follow them. Plus it’s just so aesthetically pleasing.
Makeup Revolution – Naked Chocolate Palette
The makeup Revolution white chocolate bar is fabulous for all the neutral colors you need. I did wish there wasn’t as much fallout with the powder and I definitely wish the glitters were more pigmented but I think it’s fabulous for the money you pay for and a great beginner’s palette. I love the dark purple and browns.