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Pup Cups, Pumpkins, and Photos: July 2021 Wrap-Up

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Update #1: Pup Cups

My mom and I like to try to get together for coffee once a week, specifically Biggby frozen coffees with extra espresso in them because we are absolute fiends for caffeine. Well, as of late, our girls’ day coffee adventures have only gotten better with the addition of a third member of our “Treat Yo’ Self” squad, that being my parents’ new resident fluff monster that they got a few months back. (Like this dog needed any more reasons to love going for car rides.) πŸ˜›

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Update #2: Pumpkin Babies

Our pumpkin patch is already fast at work producing flowers and pumpkin babies for the fall. I think this pumpkin patch will always hold a special place in my heart, not only because I love pumpkins, but also because the first harvest was for our wedding last October. ❀ Hopefully this year’s harvest will be just as good!

Update #3: Writing Progress

Writer Girl Summer is going really well. πŸ™‚ I’ve mostly been cruising along right on track to have my first draft complete by the first day of fall, so here’s hoping I can keep this pace up. *fingers crossed*

Update #4: Reading, Or Rather, a Lack There Of

I didn’t get much reading done in July, mostly due to a misplaced charger for my Kindle that has thankfully since been found. Also, when I wasn’t writing, let’s be honest, I was mostly watching a ton of anime. While my kindle charger was misplaced, I had to take a break on finishing Pet Sematary for my buddy read with Cupcakes & Machetes, I started reading Leigh Bardugo’s Ninth House.

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Update #5: Drawing

Other than completing theΒ Drawing Shark Week art challenge I participated in, I didn’t get a whole lot of drawing time in since this summer my focus is mostly on writing. Buuuut I’m hoping to at least squeeze in a couple Fan Art Friday posts this month since my last one was *GASP* all the way back in mid-May??! I can’t even keep up with time these days it seems. 2021 is just barreling by at breakneck speed and it’s all I can even do to try to remember what day it is half the time. Back to the point though, it will be good to get some more practice in with Procreate and my iPad Pro. I’m still loving it, I just have soooo much to learn!

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Update #6: Watching

July mostly had me been binge-watching the first 4 seasons of My Hero Academia with my husband, but I also started Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood on my own. We also enjoyed the 3 week Netflix event for the Fear Street trilogy of movies. I think we may have squeezed a couple other movies in as well, but the only one coming to mind at the moment is Gunpowder Milkshake.

Update #7: Baking

For my husband’s dad’s birthday I made a triple chocolate cake. My husband also really enjoys these honey cornbread muffins I make so I made some of those which we enjoyed with honey cinnamon butter. (SO good.) I also have an abundance of frozen blueberries I want to use up, so this weekend I made blueberry muffins. Aaaand if you follow the Sugar and Scream blog that C&M and I host together, you’ll have seen some pics of freshly bakedΒ bone-shaped snickerdoodle cookies we posted about in early July.

What shenanigans did you get up to in July? Any big plans for August? Hoping you all have an excellent month! πŸ˜€

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May 2021 Wrap-Up

May really feels like it lasted all of ten whole seconds this year. I couldn’t have told you it’s already been 2 weeks since my lastΒ Fan Art Friday post, but here we are just the same. πŸ˜›

Anywhoooo, it’s update time. Gonna keep this brief because I’m very, very tired and sleep is calling my name.

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READING: I finished reading all the volumes of Attack on Titan that are currently out, and now it seems I’ll be waiting until October for the final volume to be released so I can see how the epic saga ends. That will be pretty good timing since the second half of the final season of the anime will start back up this winter. I really hope there’s a good ending because the series has knocked my socks off since the beginning.

TELEVISION: Schitt’s Creek and a bunch of anime, including Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress, which I’m really enjoying so far. πŸ™‚

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BAKING: The only things I was ambitious enough to bake this month were a coconut cream cheese danish for Mother’s Day and a dark chocolate cake with cream cheese frosting for a family member’s birthday.

DRAWING: After finally getting the iPad Pro and accessories I’ve been drooling over for a while, I’ve been having a ball starting to learn how to use it all and have already picked up some really useful new techniques and skills I didn’t have before. It’s all been very exciting! ❀

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I am soooo ready for this long holiday weekend. I have 5 days off from work and I’m planning to savor every single minute of that time. Especially because I finally get to be reunited with the most fabulous BFF in all the land, my number #1 Partner in Crime, Cupcakes & Machetes!! ❀ ❀ ❀ Can’t wait for the shenanigans to commence! πŸ˜€

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April 2021 Art Update

What time is it? Art Update Time! πŸ™‚ I have an amazingly kind friend at work who let me borrow her fancy IPad recently to practice some digital illustrating on something different than my current art tablet set up I have, and damn, did I ever enjoy myself! ❀

I’ve been watching/reading a lot of Attack on Titan lately, so I could hardly resist drawing some AoT Fan Art while I was at it. And where better to start, than with Captain Levi?

While I was drawing badasses from AoT, it only made sense to draw some Mikasa. It was also a nice practice at shadows/lighting. Definitely a far cry from perfect, but it felt good to be practicing. ❀

Playing around with shadows made me want to play around with some different shapes and colors which resulted in the dragon pictured below.

Practicing with digital art again feels so rewarding. I love learning new techniques and pushing myself out of my comfort zone more. What things have you been learning and/or working on lately? Who else watched the first half of the final season of AoT? I absolutely looooved it. I can’t wait to see how it all ends come winter when the final episodes are released. πŸ˜€

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Posted in Uncategorized, Whatcha Reading??

Howl’s Moving Castle (Book) Review

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I’ll be honest, it wasn’t until last year that I even knew Howl’s Moving Castle was not only a fantastic animated film, but also a book! I found a copy in a 2nd and Charles Free Book Bin and snatched that baby up immediately, and I’m so glad that I did! This book was pure magic. ❀ I feel like if you’re a fan of the Miyazaki film, or if you enjoy light-hearted whimsical stories like The Last Unicorn or Stardust, that Howl’s Moving Castle might just be right up your alley. πŸ˜‰

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β€œIn the land of Ingary where such things as seven-league boots and cloaks of invisibility really exist, it is quite a misfortune to be born the eldest of the three. Everyone knows you are the one who will fail first, and worst, if the three of you set out to seek your fortunes.”

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Having grown up in a small hat shop and expecting a very uneventful life due to the social stigma of being the eldest, Sophie has her world turned upside down due to a witch’s curse that transforms her into an old woman. But perhaps the Witch of the Waste’s curse is just what Sophie needs to push herself out of the dull fate she had previously accepted for herself. Setting off to find a cure for the curse inflicted upon her, Sophie winds up finding much more than that. Witches and wizards, shapeshifters and fire demons are only a sample of the strange characters she’ll meet as she is forced out of her comfort zone. She’ll venture to moving castles and palaces and more in an effort to undo the Witch of the Waste’s magic, and she’ll do it with a sassy attitude to boot!

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The characters in this story are all so quirky and fun, and the book has a lovely light and humorous tone to it. I think the whimsy of it really made this book one of those special sort of “Feel Good” reads for me. πŸ™‚ I’m not usually a re-read sort of person (only due to there being SO MANY books out there to be read) but this is one I would consider re-reading in the future.

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β€œIt is quite a risk to spank a wizard for getting hysterical about his hair.”

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Diana Wynne Jones weaved quite the enchanting story, so I would definitely like to read more of her work in the future. She was very imaginative and created a lovely fantasy world with entertaining characters to fill it. Apparently there are two other books related to this one, so I plan to check those out one day, too!

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Hello, Nyquil, My Old Friend

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Guess who’s siiiiick again?? *mouth breathes with tissue crammed up both nostrils* Yeah, baby. This girl right here! I’m fighting off sleep for a hot minute though so I can post some random bits because sleep is for suckers!

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Bit #1: Castlevania on Netflix is really good. You should check dat shit out.

Bit #2: Shovel Knight was a very fun game. “ALL HAIL THE TROUPPLE KING!”

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Bit #3: I checked out the first three volumes of the Soul Eater manga from the library. I liked what I saw of the anime before, so I’m looking forward to reading it. πŸ™‚ Have any of you guys read it already?

Bit #4: I forgot to mention that I saw the new Spider-Man movie when it came out. It was pretty good. πŸ™‚ A really fun movie. I really want to see Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets!

Bit #5: That Game of Thrones premier.Β  Oh my gods (the old AND the new!) πŸ˜›

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Bit #6: Butts.

Bit #7: Is anyone else out there watching season 2 of Attack on Titan?? I love that show! I thought I had a lot of questions when season 1 ended but now I’ve got even MORE!! The season finale is this coming weekend and shit is gonna get REAL! πŸ˜€

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Bit #7: Summer is laaaaame. Let’s skip the rest of this icky hot weather and get straight to Fall colors, cider, Halloween, and hoodie weather!

Bit #8: So, um, this Sunday is sorta, kinda . . . THE START OF SHAAAARK WEEEEEK!!!!

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Mmmmkay, eyes can barely stay open at the moment so goodnight to one and all!

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Well, Vacation’s Over

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Vacation (aka- “work-ation”) is officially done and over with. I spent most of it working and doing paperwork/classes and being sick, but there were a few fun points sprinkled throughout it so I can’t complain too much.

My bestie made some amazing baked goods again today. Peanut butter fudge and banana bread. I am convinced she is trying to ensure everyone in the house one day has diabetes.

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Got to have a (mostly) fun pizza/movie night with my boyfriend. I say “mostly” because this was the first night I was sick so that tends to put a damper on things. He was sweet and took care of me though, so that was nice. We watched Princess Mononoke (my first time seeing it). I really enjoyed the film, though I gotta say I was surprised by how much darker and more violent this one was than the other Studio Ghibli films I’ve seen. Not that that is a bad thing, just very surprising to say the least. I loved it though. I like darker animation in general though. Anyone who says cartoons are only for children clearly hasn’t ventured far into the world of animation.

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Same, girl. Same.

I’d have to say that out of any of the Studio Ghibli movies I’ve seen so far, Princess Mononoke was by far the most mature. There has been a magical childlike quality in the others I’ve watched that I didn’t feel in this one but the magic is still definitely there. It’s just a different type of magic is all. The movie explores the relationship between humans and nature, focusing on the conflict of gods, beasts, and man (man, of course, being the biggest beast of them all) trying to share the same earth.

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Well, I would write more but as I said at the start of this post: vacation has come to an end and I have to work in the morning. Off to bed now.