Another month has come and gone and I’m once again linking up with Leigh Kramer to talk about some of what I’ve been into this month.
July was a great reading month! First of all, I fulfilled a longtime goal and started an IRL book club. Turns out I had a good group of friends from church who were interested in being part of one, so we read Miriam Toews’ All My Puny Sorrows and got together to discuss it. It’s a really great group and I’m looking forward to keeping going. Also, I found out that our local library has a bunch of book club kits with ten copies of a book, so another reason to love them! I also read Sarah Bessey’s Out of Sorts for my online book club (which thus far has been a great opportunity to read books I already owned but hadn’t gotten around to reading).
A whole bunch of my library holds also came in this month, so I had a great excuse to spend whole days sometimes just reading. Favourite reads of the month included Nisi Shawl’s Everfair (steampunk set in the Belgian Congo), Victoria Aveyard’s War Storm (I somehow didn’t realize until this book that the series is set in some version of North America. I guess I didn’t really look at the maps before?), Rebecca Roanhorse’s Trail of Lightning (Navajo postapocalyptic fiction), Uzma Jalaluddin’s Ayesha At Last (a Muslim take on Pride and Prejudice set in modern-day Toronto), Rachel Caine’s Smoke and Iron (the latest installment in the Great Library series), Kate Forsyth’s Bitter Greens (a lovely retelling of Rapunzel that wove together the stories of Rapunzel, the witch, and Charlotte-Rose de la Force, the author who popularized the story), and Tomi Adeyemi’s Children of Blood and Bone (a stunning fantasy novel set in the African kingdom of Orisha, which seems to be roughly Nigeria). We leave for vacation in a few days, so I expect August to also be productive reading-wise, though I’m holding off on library books for a bit in the hopes of making a dent in my owned but unread pile (digital and print). As usual, you can see the books I’ve read so far this year on my 50 Book Pledge page, and I’ve also begun updating my Goodreads page again.
It’s been a busy month for going out to see movies and shows. At the movies, I caught The Incredibles 2, Oceans 8, and Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again, and I found all three thoroughly delightful. We also saw 4 (!) plays this month: the Stratford productions of The Music Man and Coriolanus (absolutely stunning! they did this cool modernized thing, and had a whole scene transmitted via text message), the Drayton production of The Little Mermaid, and the Mirvish production of The King and I.
On the small screen, Aaron and I have just wrapped up a 30 Rock rewatch. Having seen all seven seasons in fairly short succession, we can confirm that Dotcom is the best character and Jack’s Super PAC Americans for an American America is the best joke.
I found some great nostalgic items at the thrift store this month! Oxygen was on heavy rotation in my car for most of the month. I’m now so close to having a complete Avalon discography purchased from my local thrift store!
I won a $150 gift certificate to Ricki’s, my favourite clothing store in the whole world, this month! Since it’s my favourite clothing store in the whole world I had already purchased all my favourite dresses of the season, but I had fun buying some matching necklaces and earring and I’m saving the rest for next season.
I’ve also continued making a bit of jewellery this month. The nautical pieces I made to wear to The Little Mermaid, naturally.
Also, in the spirit of trying all the new fashion things at once, I tried some semi-permanent red dye on my hair. It’s mostly washed out now, except for a few highlights, but it was a fun experiment.
I finished two cross-stitch projects this month: Neptune, the latest in my planets series, and Beyonce, from my new book of feminist icons cross stitch patterns.
I took full advantage of the end of strawberry season by cooking and baking up a storm in between heat waves. Highlights included this strawberry basil jam (which formed part of this strawberry basil cake), chocolate-covered strawberry cupcakes, strawberry shortcake sundaes, and a berry tiramisu cake for Aaron’s birthday.
As usual, you can find all my favourite recipes of the month on my monthly What I’m Into Pinterest board.
The very best thing I saw online this month was this album of stills from Pride and Prejudice overlaid with headlines from The Onion
I also thoroughly enjoyed these tweets
This summer marks 10 years since I’ve graduated high school, which is hard to believe! I’m not going to be back in New Brunswick for the reunion, but I did get together with a few high school classmates for Korean BBQ in Toronto and it was a lovely time.
Also, spot the 17 cringeworthy moments in my yearbook writeup.
That’s it for me for the month, be sure to check out Leigh’s blog for more linkup contributions!