My 2018 Reading List

This year I managed to read 65 books.

Favorite book: Losing Brave by Bailee Madison and Stefne Miller

Least Favorite Book: The Outsider by Stephen King

Mortal Engines by Philip ReeveThe Burning Maze by Rick RiordanMark of the Plague by Kevin SandsThe Dark Prophecy by Rick RiordanResistance by Jennifer A. NielsenThe Outsider by Stephen KingTop Prospect by Paul VolponiThe Hidden Oracle by Rick RiordanStuart Little by E.B. WhiteHarry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. RowlingEvangeline of the Bayou by Jan EldredgeThe Lost Lullaby by Jason SegelBorn Survivors by Wendy   HoldenThe Thing About Leftovers by C.C. PayneMockingjay by Suzanne CollinsThe Sleepwalker Tonic by Jason SegelMapping the Bones by Jane YolenHarry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. RowlingOut of Left Field by Ellen KlagesCharlie & Frog by Karen KaneAbove the Line by Urban MeyerLocke & Key (Collections) by Joe HillCatching Fire by Suzanne CollinsThe Hunger Games by Suzanne CollinsThe Adventurer's Guide to Successful Escapes by Wade Albert WhiteYou Throw Like a Girl by Rachele AlpineHarry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. RowlingFuzzy by Tom AnglebergerGhosts by Raina TelgemeierGhost by Jason ReynoldsTerror at Bottle Creek by Watt KeyThe Girl Who Drank the Moon by Kelly BarnhillThe Blood of Olympus by Rick RiordanBooked by Kwame AlexanderThe House of Hades by Rick RiordanThe Mark of Athena by Rick RiordanThe Son of Neptune by Rick RiordanAspergirls by Rudy SimonePeter Pan by J.M. BarrieThe Lost Hero by Rick RiordanSweet Possession by Maya BanksDara Palmer's Major Drama by Emma ShevahProjekt 1065 by Alan GratzAshes to Asheville by Sarah DooleyRefugee by Alan GratzI Love You, Michael Collins by Lauren Baratz-LogstedEverything Is Illuminated by Jonathan Safran FoerReflection by Elizabeth LimThe Sand Warrior by Mark  SiegelSweet Temptation by Maya BanksWarcross by Marie LuSee You in the Cosmos by Jack ChengThe Silence of the Lambs by Thomas   HarrisRed Dragon by Thomas   HarrisLosing Brave by Bailee MadisonA Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'EngleReady Player One by Ernest ClineInkheart by Cornelia FunkeThe Epic Fail of Arturo Zamora by Pablo CartayaLily and Dunkin by Donna GephartThe Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck by Mark MansonThe Warden's Daughter by Jerry SpinelliTurtles All the Way Down by John GreenBacklash by Sarah Darer LittmanA Blind Guide to Stinkville by Beth Vrabel

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Ok, friends.

If you haven’t figured it out by now, I have stopped writing my “I love it” blog. It’s not because I don’t love things anymore, but I found myself dreading writing it every week because I didn’t have ideas or I wasn’t feeling creative or the idea of writing made me cringe.

You probably think that’s a weird thing to say.

Cringe.

But it’s true. I have been having problems typing for a while now. I don’t know if the layout of my laptop keyboard or what, but typing can sometimes give me the “heebie-jeebies” – my skin starts to crawl and my hands feel really uncomfortable. Usually, these symptoms are precursors to panic attacks so you can imagine why it’s been hard for me to push through.

It’s not just blogs that I haven’t written, but even my stories. I haven’t even attempted to write a book in two years because sitting down to write makes my stomach turn (it’s starting to hit me now so I’m gonna wrap this up).

I’m going to try using a voice to text feature to get more of my content out there. I miss telling my stories and updating the world on what I’ve been doing.

Stay tuned.

Storyboard That

Friends, I found a new website that I am so excited to start using more! I had overheard it being talked about by a few teachers at my school and then saw more of it on Twitter yesterday so I decided to give it a try.

The platform is super easy to use. It’s basically drag and drop what you want onto the storyboard. There are a ton of different backgrounds, characters, themes, and options to make what you need!

I decided to see what I could use this for during my Flag Football unit. After just a few minutes of manipulation, I had a full blown storyboard/comic showing my kids the three steps in getting the ball into play!

Screen Shot 2018-09-10 at 3.35.08 PM

I am so excited to find out what else I can do with this! If you guys have used this before, show me what you’ve done or give me suggestions on how to use it better!

They have no idea.

One of my biggest pet peeves in life is when people say they have OCD. They say it because they are particular about something specific or they like things clean, but most likely, they don’t have it. I even got into an argument the other night because someone said “OCD isn’t a disability.”

OCD is a chronic and long-lasting disorder in which a person has uncontrollable, reoccurring thoughts (obsessions) and behaviors (compulsions) that he or she feels the urge to repeat over and over. It has an affect on the daily lives of those who have it in such a way that it can’t be ignored.

I have OCD. I’ve been very open about my OCD. I advocate for myself because I struggle with it daily and I want people to know that it is more than just wanting things organized.

On the surface, most people would never guess I have OCD. They know I like things certain ways and what-not, but most people don’t realize the depth that OCD can take.

They have no idea that in my house, I have lists and notes everywhere reminding me to do things or not do things.

They have no idea that in order to leave my house, there is a 3 minute process of locking and checking doors.

They have no idea that the thoughts in my head are repeated so many times daily that I actually lose track of what is real and what is not.

They have no idea that I will pick at my own skin until I bleed just for a small feeling of control.

They have no idea that my life is based on a system of rewards I give myself for doing things that most people don’t think twice about.

They have no idea about the amount of research I do before I go to new places – I have to figure out parking situations, menus, an itinerary, and prices before I even  leave.

They have no idea that nothing I do is spontaneous by any means; everything I do is well thought out and practiced in my mind and I get distressed when things don’t go how I plan.

I’ve been dealing with this my whole life. The reason it doesn’t look like anything is going on with me is because people only see me in certain situations where I have learned to cope with my OCD. It took a long time to do that. There was a point in my life where I very literally went to work and went home. I did nothing else. I only went grocery shopping once a month and if I needed something in the mean time, too bad. I’d wake up in the middle of the night to lock doors and would end up  doing it for an hour because even though I can see that it’s locked, I didn’t trust myself. I would purposefully stay up all night so I wouldn’t have to go to bed because I didn’t want to have the vivid nightmares that still haunt me.

So yeah, it looks like I have my life together, but it’s taken me a while to get here.

August 5th. I love it.

I know. I’m sorry I haven’t written lately. Hopefully once school starts and I’m back in my routine, I won’t be such a space case.

First up this week, finishing my grad class. I love it. I took 4 classes this summer and I didn’t lose my mind! I finished my last class this week. Now, I don’t have another class until October!

I love it.

Next up, checkers. I love it. Today we decided to pull out my checker board (or rug, I guess). I technically won best of three proving that you can accidentally win in this game!

I love it.

Finally, Liberty Lagoon. I love it. On Tuesday I went with my Louisiana family to a really cool water park in Baton Rouge. It had slides, a lazy river, and splash pads. I think I had just as much fun as the kids!

I love it. It’s great. Everything’s great.

I love it.

July 15th. I love it.

I am on vacation so there’s lot to love!

First up this week, moving into my new apartment. I love it. I’ve been waiting to do this for a month and it was finally time. Thanks to the help of my friends it was a very easy transition and I unpacked and everything before I left for vacation!

I love it.

Next up, visiting my brother. I love it. I came to LA for a few days to see him and Andi and Shelby and we’ve done so much! I tried Brazilian food for the first time, went to a midnight showing of “Batman Returns”, had amazing ice cream, and even ended up doing a little homework. I leave tomorrow but I can’t wait to come back!

I love it.

Finally, completing an item on my bucket list. I love it. That’s right folks, today I finally got to put my feet in the Pacific Ocean! This is only my 6th visit to LA so I asked if we could do this special. The water was cool and refreshing and maybe next time we’ll spend more time there.

I love it. It’s great. Everything’s great.

I love it.