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New Year, New Goals: The 2022 Edition

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When you’re trying to be productive in the new year by starting a new Planner and your cat decides to flop down on your pens and stickers for it like, “Nah. Our only plan for today is to be lazy and comfy.”

Happy New Year! ❀ I hope everyone had a great holiday season and is ready to kick some ass in the new year, and by that I mean, of course, find and do all the things that make you happiest in life. πŸ™‚

Now, before we get on with this year’s resolutions, let’s see how I did with my goals for 2021. *drum roll, please!*

After the dumpster fire that was 2020, I decided to be gentle with myself when setting goals for 2021. I really wanted to work on my focus last year. My brain is all over the place all the time, my attention span sucks, and I have a tendency to start ALL the things and complete almost none of them. (It’s not beating yourself up when it’s 100% truuuue!) πŸ˜€

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That said, I think I nailed this goal. 2021 was the year I completed the first draft of my book I’ve been working on, which was a HUGE milestone that I’m very proud of. ❀

My other goals had been to push myself out of my comfort zone more, and to work on my mental health. I think these were both kind of a mixed bag for me, and they’re things I’d like to continue to work on in 2022.

SO, that said, let’s get into the year at hand: 2022 πŸ˜€

Goal #1: Finish the second draft of my book. I’d really like to get this done by mid to late summer if I can.

Goal #2: Work on my overall well-being. Health, Mental Health, Working on my goals, but also making sure to set aside time to have fun.

Goal #3: I set my Goodreads goal for 20 books/graphic novels this year. I wanted to keep the number of books I read reasonable since I will be spending so much time writing. Another part of my reading goal is that I primarily want to read things I already own.

Goal #4: Scheduling my days and living by a solid collection of To-Do Lists is how I thrive, so I want to try to structure my days out a little better this year so I have time for all of the things I enjoy and want to achieve.

Goal #5: I’ve been struggling with making time for drawing AND writing, so I’d like to try to find some balance there if I can.

What are your goals for the new year? How did you do on last year’s resolutions if you made them? What things are you most excited for in 2022?

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November 2021 Wrap-Up

Hello, December! ❀ It’s kind of bizarre to think that 2021 has already nearly come to an end. It feels like we were JUST wishing for 2020 to be over. What even IS time anymore since the pandemic hit? 0.o

I hope you guys all had a great November. πŸ™‚ What was your favorite part of the month? Here’s some of the things I enjoyed most throughout November:

NaNoWriMo: NaNoWriMo was definitely interesting this year. This was the first year I’ve gone into it in 2nd Draft/Revisions mode, so it was a little more difficult for me to get my footing at first. I definitely added to my word count and fleshed out a lot of the bare bones areas of the book, but I also spent a lot of time moving things around and merging my new material in with the old. Near the end of the month I found myself less focused on the word count, and more focused on just doing whatever needed to be done. All in all, I may have veered off course as far as my original NaNoWriMo goal, but I still think it was a very successful month of writing/editing, and I’m proud of what I accomplished in that amount of time. πŸ™‚

Buddy Read:Β Cupcakes & Machetes and I did a buddy read for Science Fiction month ofΒ The Time Machine by H.G. Wells. If you want to see what we thought of it feel free to check out ourΒ post we did about it.

Thanksgiving: We kept things very small, just immediate family, and everyone involved was vaccinated. I like laid back holidays so I thought it was really nice. ❀ My dad and I love Bruce Campbell, so we watched his new movie Black Friday.

Watching: My favorite shows I watched this month are definitely Arcane (on Netflix) and Dragula, Season 4 (on Shudder).

Reading: I only finished reading ONE thing this entire month, and it was my buddy read with C&M. Buuuut, I did also just start reading Erin Morgenstern’s The Night Circus, which has been very interesting right from the beginning. πŸ™‚

Video Games: I’ve been playing a lot of Mario Kart 8 this week. πŸ™‚Β 

Baking: Meh. I was pretty excited to try this no bake pumpkin pie recipe, but it was bland as hell, to be honest. I’ve only ever tried making 2 pumpkin pies in my life, both for Thanksgiving with my family, and both were terrible. The first one was when I was a kid, my dad and I made a gorgeous pumpkin pie but forgot one of the ingredients… SUGAR. D: So I guess failing at pumpkin pie is a family tradition at this point. lol

What are you most excited for in December? Any last minute projects or goals you have going on before the new year? πŸ™‚

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October/November 2021

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Well, to say things have been busy, would be an understatement, but fortunately (for the most part) October and November have been a lot of fun. I hope you all had a spooky season full of horror movies aplenty, sweet treats, and Halloween fun as well!

Here’s some of the highlights of what my October was like:

Mr. Moth and I celebrated our 1 year wedding anniversary, as well as 6 years of being a couple. ❀ 

I completed about half of the Corpestober art challenge prompts for the month.

At work, I dressed up as Coraline for our fun Halloween festivities. It ended up being cold and rainy the day of the work Halloween party, so I was thankful that part of my costume involved a rain coat. πŸ˜›

Halloween weekend we went to Hell. (Hell, Michigan that is.) We went with Mrs. and Mr. Cupcakes & Machetes and met up with a couple of their friends for a hellishly fun game of putt putt, an amazing lunch, and just some general shenanigans and adventuring around the little town. It was such a good time. The day before that (Devil’s Night) we spent going to multiple cider mills, carving pumpkins, and watching scary movies. It was an absolutely amazing Halloween weekend with absolutely amazing friends. ❀

We also got our booster shots of the vaccine at my work, so that was nice to get that done so easily.

The whole month of October I took a break from writing and just focused on fun stuff, which meant getting to play video games, too. Something I love, but haven’t been able to devote much time to for a while. (Too many dang hobbies!) Mr. Moth got me the game Lost in Random and I absolutely loved it. ❀ 

So far in November my main focus has been NaNoWriMo, aaaand I have a buddy read of The Time Machine by H.G. Wells with C&M for Science Fiction month. I’ll probably be fairly scarce around here the next 3 weeks or so since I’m really trying to reach that 50,000 word count for the NaNoWriMo writing challenge this month. I’m a little behind where I want to be, but still hopeful I can make up for it. πŸ™‚ I won’t beat myself up if I don’t make the 50,000 words I’m aiming for. I have a lot to do in preparation of the holidays, Mr. Moth’s birthday, and plenty other things to keep me busy, and I’ll still be co-hostingΒ Sugar and Scream with C&M so we’ll see what I can do with NaNoWriMo this year.

Did anyone else watch the new Netflix show based off League of Legends called Arcane? Mr. Moth and I watched the first 3 episodes and it’s sooo gooooood! πŸ˜€

Anywho, I’m off to try to slay the NaNoWriMo beast. Hopefully I’ll have something successful to report when I return. Have a great November, everyone! ❀ ❀ ❀ Hoping to return to a somewhat normal blogging schedule in December. πŸ™‚

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Mission Accomplished: First Draft

“Writer Girl Summer” is finally at its end, and so is my blog hiatus I was on. My entire summer was pretty much just a caffeine-fueled writing frenzy of utter madness. It feels really damn good though to have completed my (very rough) first draft. I am so ready to take a much-needed break from writing to let the story breathe, and to regain some of my sanity before I go on to tackle the dreaded second draft.

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Luckily for me, Halloween is just around the corner, so I’m going to use the full month of October to recover from my crazy writing binge and to just focus on doing all the things I love to indulge in during spooky season. We’re talking horror movies galore, catching up on some creepy video games, reading scary stories, fall baking, etc. I’m also planning to participate in the 2021 Corpsetober Art Challenge, so I’m really excited to get back into drawing. I really didn’t draw much this summer since I was so focused on completing the first draft of my book, so I can’t wait to get back at it and practice some more with my iPad Pro. It was kind of torturous just seeing it collect dust all summer, but I’m glad I remained focused.Β 

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I can’t wait to start catching up on everyone’s blogs over the next several days, and see what you guys have been up to while I was away. In the mean time, how was your summer?? What are you most excited for this fall?

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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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5 Years Ignited

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Oops! I might be a few days late posting this, but my humble little blog has officially been fluttering around the blogosphere for 5 years now. Half a decade! πŸ˜€

I just wanted to thank all of you for being the best blogging buddies a girl could ask for. I highly doubt I would have stuck around this long if it weren’t for all the wonderful friends I’ve made here, so thank you for making this such a fun and amazing place to be time and time again. ❀

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Utterly Pooped.

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Sometimes I look at my cat and think to myself, “What a life.” She has no kitty bills, doesn’t have to spend 40 hours a week or more at a cat job, she gets constant praise and care for nothing more than being adorable, and the most anyone expects out of her is to poop in the appropriate box and not to scratch up the furniture. I can do those things, too, damnit. Ugh. Being a human is absolute butts.

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None of these drawings are mine, FYI. I’m far too lazy to be drawing right now. I did do a couple pieces for that Haunted Garden Art Challenge, but I’ll post those another time. For now I just lament about my non-kitty existence. (If you can’t tell, work has been completely kicking my ass lately.)

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This post is mostly just a “Hey, there, Stranger. Yeah, I didn’t drop off the face of the earth despite what my blogging activity this past month might imply” sort of post. Oh, and an excuse to post cats, too, of course.

I’ve got a 5 day holiday weekend coming up and I am SO ready! I hope June has been a kind month to all of you. ❀

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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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March 2021: Digital Art, Fluffy Friends & Other Updates

Oof, March has been an absolute whirlwind of a month. It’s been quite the mix of high and low points. Registering for classes, family health emergencies, the sudden loss of a wonderful friend who taught me so much about life and brought so much joy to everyone who knew her, house and yard projects and repairs, and many other things have had me a bit stressed these past few weeks to say the least.

I did manage to squeeze in a bit of practice on my art tablet, taking some old sketches and outlining and coloring them digitally as seen below:

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Started playing Super Mario 3D World on the Wii U with Mr. Moth so that’s been a fun distraction from some of the more stressful stuff that’s been going on lately.

I think the only thing I baked this month was a dark chocolate cake with peanut butter frosting. Soooo good! ❀

I haven’t finished reading anything new at all this month. My mood has been all over the place, which also means my reading preferences have been just as erratic. I did start reading Leigh Bardugo’s The Lives of Saints and re-reading Shadow & Bone in preparation for the Netflix show coming out. It’s been like 7 or 8 years I think since I read S&B so I was definitely due for a refresher before the show starts. I always think it’s interesting to see the differences between a show or movie and its source material. I also started reading this big ol’ Encyclopedia of Witchcraft & Demonology that had belonged to my grandma back in the day. It’s something I have read bits and pieces from but never completed reading from start to finish so I’d like to finally do that. I’m not in a rush though, It’s a lot of information that I’d rather take my time and read here and there rather than all at once.

All the critters are doing well. Luna the baby hedgehog at my work is getting sooo big. She’s “quilling” right now so she’s a little grumpy at times but the Aveeno Oatmeal baths we’ve given her have helped a lot. Quilling is basically a process that can take up to 6 months of age where she will slowly be losing her baby quills here and there and having them replaced with her big girl quills. Here’s a pic of her after her first Oatmeal bath. She was so happy and relaxed afterward.

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Bailey’s been living her best life, as always. πŸ˜› Mr. Moth got her one of those little flower-shaped kitty water fountains and she LOVES it. It’s funny because he wasn’t exactly Team Cat before Bailey and I lived with him and he’s since turned into this Turbo Cat Dad, spoiling her rotten and researching things to make sure she is the happiest kitty she can be. ❀

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My parents new fluff monster is also doing really well. πŸ™‚ He had his first vet appointment and got a clean bill of health. He did really well while he was there and so he got a special “Shit Happens” treat from the doggy bakery. Kind of appropriate since they needed a stool sample from him for his first visit. Haha He’s such a happy boy and has already brought so much joy to my parents’ home with his goofy personality. The neighborhood squirrels may not like him but we adore him. ❀ We’ve been working on tricks and he currently knows “Sit”, “Lay Down” and “Speak”. He’s also really good at solving dog treat puzzles. ^_^

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That’s pretty much it for my updates for March. I tried to focus on the more positive stuff for my post but it was definitely a month with its fair share of worry and tears. Hopefully April will be better. πŸ™‚ How was your March? Oh, yeah, and Happy Spring! πŸ˜€

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February 2021: Huskies, Hedgehogs, and Honey Chai Cakes, Oh My!

I can’t believe it’s already almost March! February was a busy and awesome month full of surprises so I figured it was time to get my butt back on the blog and do an update post. πŸ™‚ I just got my second dose of the Covid-19 vaccine this past Tuesday and I’m so happy and grateful. (Even if it did really knock me on my ass the day after with sore muscles/joints, fatigue, little waves of nausea, and a headache). After that, I was back to my normal self though and I was just thankful to be able to get it, so no regrets. Thanks, Science! ❀

I also started the process towards going to school for graphic design. Michigan has a new program it has rolled out to get people over the age of 25 back in school to get their associate degree by covering their tuition. It’s such a great opportunity and was too good of an offer to pass up, so I’ll be starting classes this summer. I’ve even already got my college ID! One of my co-workers is already taking the exact program at the same college and has had great things to say about it, so I’m really excited. Pluuuus, I’ll get to share in this experience with my BFFΒ Cupcakes & Machetes since she is going back to college as well starting in the spring. πŸ˜€ Different schools/classes, but we’re both excited to geek out over school stuff together so that will make it even better all the way around!

Other fun surprises this month came in the form of two new fuzzy and prickly friends. A girl I went to school with before was recently trying to find a home for a good dog in a sad and tough situation so he wouldn’t have to go to a shelter so long story short, my parents opened their home to him and now have a lovable, goofy, clumsy, fluff monster to call their own. ❀ My other new little animal friend came in the form of a lovely little hedgehog at my work. She’s so sweet and cute and the participants at my job just absolutely adore her, as do I. πŸ™‚

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It wouldn’t be an update post on THIS blog if I didn’t mention recent reads, hobbies, and baking. I didn’t have as much time for those things as I’d have hoped, buuuut I did bake this delicious Honey-Drizzled Cinnamon Chai Cake:

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In reading news, I happily read Neil Gaiman’s The Graveyard BookΒ  this month. It was such a treat. Kind of a nice and cozy, comfort read. πŸ™‚ I also started reading Leigh Bardugo’sΒ The Lives of Saints (Grishaverse)Β  and, for a refresher before the Netflix adaptation comes out, I’m re-reading/listening toΒ Shadow and Bone. I just watched the official trailer yesterday and I. Am. PUMPED. ❀

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Well, those are my updates for the month! πŸ™‚ I also did some writing and more practice with digital art but not as much as I had planned due to all the other stuff going on. All in all, though, February was a pretty good month. I hope you guys all had a good go of it as well. ❀ Looking forward to catching up on some blog posts I’ve missed but please fill me in on any excitement I have missed in the mean time. What were your highlights of the past few weeks?

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