My Bullet Journal: January & February Spreads

Last year I did an entire series of posts about My Bullet Journal journey. It was the first year I started, and I shared my tools, tips, spreads, mistakes, and ideas. I am using a Leuchtturm 1917 Medium Size Hardcover A5 Notebook with Dotted Pages in Purple for 2018. I hope you enjoy my spreads and ideas from my bullet journal. I’d love if you would share your own ideas or photos of your journals with me, too!

2017 Bullet Journal Posts 

2018 Bullet Journal Posts

This post contains affiliate links. 

January & February Spreads


I didn’t do all of the beginning-of-year prep work in the front of my journal like I had planned. I left pages with a sticky note to hold spaces, and just recently I went back and created several of those pages. I still have 3-4 more spreads to go, but I am going to try to get those designed and finalized in March.


Birthday Master List 

I did a beautiful spread last year for the birthdays of family and friends. It was very time-consuming, so this year I thought I would try to shake things up and do a new layout and something fresh. Can we add colorful, too? I found a similar spread to what I ended up creating and loved it. The only problem was…I very obviously had about 3X as many family and friends to list out on this page. I ran out of room and had to nix a few friends and their kids. I don’t like that I don’t have a complete list of loved ones here. That’s the drawback of this design. If you have a smaller circle of family/friends, this is an easy layout that would work. ALSO: Family members, quit having children on different days. We have no more room. Let’s get some planning going. Share some birthdays. There are plenty of dates to choose from.


February is MY Month

I celebrated my birthday this month on Feb. 22nd and I love how I decorated that week and my birthday! I wasn’t quite sure what I wanted to do for my February intro page. I kind of like how it turned out, but then I also wish I had done a reds theme with hearts and other February content.


March Sneak Peeks

I chose a greens theme for March. It is perfect for St. Patrick’s Day and I just so happened to have plenty of green washi tape. I had enough to do a different tape on each of my weekly spreads for the month. I started a new weekly layout for March, too. I’m hoping this new layout works better for me.

I also learned a hack for filling in your habit tracker. There are certain days where we don’t do certain things we’re keeping track of. For example, I don’t need to water my plants every day. Having so many empty boxes for that task (and others I don’t need to do daily) makes my tracker look a little down. The top portion looks amazing, and then the bottom half looks pitiful. I’ve decided to color in these particular blanks black to help clear up my tracker for myself and make it look more accurate.

Have you found any spread that work super well for you?

What has been your bujo inspiration lately? I’m always looking for ideas!

What do you want to see in next month’s Bullet Journal post? 

My Favorite…Childhood Movie

My Favorite.. is a weekly meme hosted by Maureen’s Books. In this meme we share every week something we love with each other. Because let’s face it.. The world can be a dark place and it’s time to share something positive.

Childhood Movie

I was an eclectic kid. I had a handful of movies I’d watch on repeat. So much so that my mom got tired of watching the same one over and over in the same night, and staying up to rewind the VHS. So she taught me how to use the VCR before I was two.  I broke two VHS tapes because they were so worn out from watching.


WWW Wednesdays (2.28.18)


This is a weekly meme hosted by Sam @ Taking On A World of Words. To join in answer the following three questions and hop over to Sam’s and leave your link.

What are you currently reading?

It has been over a month since I did my last WWW post! I can hardly believe it. I have been so busy, and then when I wasn’t I hadn’t really made any reading progress, so I didn’t think I should post. But since the last time…

I am currently reading A Devil in Scotland. I just started it Sunday night, so I haven’t gotten too terribly far into it.

1806, Scotland: Wild, reckless Callum MacCreath is in no hurry to become someone’s husband. But when his responsible, steady older brother Ian announces his engagement to their childhood friend Rebecca, Callum makes a startling discovery: he wants the lovely young lass for himself. But it’s too late, and when Ian banishes him for his duplicity, he’s only too happy to leave Scotland forever…

1816: Marrying Ian was the practical, logical thing for Becca to do. But once Callum sailed away to America, she missed his rakish charm and lust for life. Now, ten years later, Becca is a widow when a much-changed Callum returns to his Scottish homeland.

 What did you just finish reading?

I finished A Wedding at Two Love Lane by Kieran Kramer. I didn’t like how the first one turned out, and I can’t help but find myself looking an the implausibility of this next installment. I flew through Five Days, Five Kisses by Angela Carling right before Valentine’s Day. It was light and fun. I devoured The Rogue is Back in Town when I had the time to read, and quickly moved on to Wallflower Most Wanted. I am happy to say I am moving right along in my challenges and I am on track with my Goodreads goal and my Reading Assignment challenge. I wish I was a little further ahead with my NetGalley goal, but I plan to catch up in March.

What do you think you’ll read next?

Do you ever feel you get stuck in a rut when you read the exact same genre over and over? I’ve been reading quite a bit of historical romance in the last year, so I’m going to switch gears slightly and read from a few different genres.  I also want to get to some of the harder letters of the alphabet, especially since I’ve already duplicated W several times for my alphabet challenge. All of these count for my NetGalley goal, too.

 How about you? What are you reading this week?

Leave a comment with your answers! Share the link to your WWW Wednesday post OR leave your answers in the comments if you don’t have a blog. Happy Reading! 🙂

Top Ten Tuesday: I Could Re-Read Forever

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together. For the list of past topics and future schedule, click here.

Books I Could Re-Read Forever


Which of your favorites make up your always re-read list?

Tuesday Teaser & Intro: A Wedding at Two Love Lane


Synopsis ~ A Wedding at Two Love Lane

Greer Jones has made a real name for herself at the elegant matchmaking agency Two Love Lane. For a lot of reasons–including a past engagement she broke off–practical tech expert Greer is more interested in the business of love than the experience of it, but she can’t help but covet a gorgeous wedding gown that’s the prize in an upcoming cocktail-party contest. In a moment of brazen inspiration, Greer asks a handsome Brit she’s only just met to accompany her to the party. He agrees–and Greer believes her date is a starving artist. Little does she know the truth. . .

Ford Smith, as he calls himself, is actually Stanford Elliott Wentworth Smythe, the Eighth Baron of Wickshire. Fresh off a breakup with a money-grubbing siren who deceived him all the way to the altar, Ford has no desire to fall in love–especially with Greer who, like the desired wedding gown, is beautiful but only skin-deep. But soon Ford realizes that there’s more to Greer than meets the eye. Her professionalism is matched only by her passion for life and love. . .and, best of all, she has no idea that he’s to the manor born. Could it be that true love is priceless after all?


Chapter 1 


Greer Jones had just closed the iron gate with the heart and lovers’ initials wrought into it in front of the two-hundred-year-old house at Two Love Lane. “He wan’t the man for me, Mom,” she said into her phone. Behind her the house stood tall and proud beneath a canopy of oak and pecan trees. Its windows – three stories of them – sparkled in the sunlight. Love is everywhere, it seemed to say. Come in and we’ll help you find it. 


She couldn’t tell her best friends that she’d wondered if there was something inherently wrong with her, like a chip missing in her heart.


“I’d like to work on this project instead. If I do, however, it will require you to stop being such a greedy little bastard.”

Henny.” His eyes narrowed. “You can’t call me that.”

“Just watch me,” she said dryly. “You lose me as a friend and you really don’t have anyone to deliver a eulogy at your funeral one day. Let’s be real about this.”

Would you keep reading? 

tuesdayTeaser Tuesday is hosted by The PurpleBooker. Post two sentences from somewhere in a book you’re reading. No spoilers, please! List the author and book title too. Link up HERE.

First Chapter/First Paragraph/Tuesday Intros was created by Bibliophile By The Sea and is now hosted by Vicki @ I’d Rather Be At The Beach. To participate, share the first paragraph (or a few) from a book you’re reading or thinking about reading soon. Link up HERE.

Review: Five Days, Five Kisses


Title: Five Days, Five Kisses
Author: Angela Carling
Release Date: January 2018
Length: 257 pages
Series?: no
Genre: Children’s

What could be more awkward than getting dumped at graduation….kissing five strangers to get over it! Nikola Jensen hates endings, like when her parents told her they were splitting up, or when she was forced to leave her first love and idyllic lake home to move to the barren desert of Arizona. So, two years later when her high school boyfriend Sam, publicly breaks her heart, Nikola can’t seem to let go. To help her move on Nikola’s best friends, Liberty and Maya create the absurd Five Days, Five Kisses plan. All she has to do is kiss a new guy every day for five days and Sam will be a distant memory. Five Days, kissing five strangers. What could possibly go wrong?

Find the book: Goodreads | Amazon

my review

My Thoughts 

This was a fun, light, and quick read! Perfect to kick off spring break or summer with.

I enjoyed the relationship Nikola had with each of her friends, Liberty and Maya. Liberty is analytical to the extreme, and Maya is more in tune with emotions. Regardless, both girls have her back and are fiercely loyal. Between the two of them, they set Nikola up on a date each night after her boyfriend breaks up with her on graduation.

While some of the convos and dates were a little improbable, I can say if it were me, my friends would have totally been Liberty and Maya and I would have been forced to go along with the five kisses in five days theory. Honestly, I can’t say after the first kiss I would be needing to be forced. 🙂 It does sound like an adventure – and fun!!

I also really loved Nikola’s reflection on her relationship and what she was forced to give up when she started dating said loser ex-boyfriend. Her realization about herself was not something I expected and I’m so glad Carling made a point to include that in the book.

Overall, a great book about strong teen friendships in a positive light!


TitlePic2I was born and raised in Palm Springs, California and after living in several different states ended up back in yet another desert in Arizona, where I reside with my husband, three kids and five cats.  We’ve now lived here for ten years and haven’t melted yet, although we have fried eggs on the sidewalk. We love to escape to our cabin in the mountains or to my favorite place, the beach. I have several obsessions, including my passion for all kinds of music and my inability to stop buying cheap jewelry. I am often caught singing in public bathrooms, just for the acoustics, or rollerblading through my neighborhood while singing loudly to whatever is playing on my iPod. I love to have lots of flowers in my garden and shiny things in my house.  My favorite holiday of all (going along with the shiny things theme) is Christmas. All in all, I consider myself the luckiest, most blessed person alive and am so happy to have this opportunity to write and also to share my writing with other people!

Find the author: Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Sunday Post ~ One Year Older

The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimba @ Caffeinated Book Reviewer. It is a weekly news post to recap the past week on your blog, showcase the books and other goodies you’ve received, and share news about upcoming events on your blog. Be creative and personalize it! To get in on the Sunday fun day, see the rules here: Suday Post Meme.

Monday was a school holiday, so I slept in and it was glorious. I stayed in bed for about an hour after I woke up, reading my book with my CPAP on. Then I took my Jeep in to get my new tires put on. I am still over the moon that I paid less than $580 for the entire new set. And now my car rides like a dream and no more sliding! I’ve had some close calls lately with so little tread left. It is very reassuring to have gone ahead and taken care of this now rather than waiting.

I had Tuesday off for a doctor’s appointment, get my license renewed, and do some other much errands I don’t have time to do. My Netflix and Hulu accounts have been acting weird at my house, and when I exit a show or Netflix entirely, the sound still continues. The software is up to date, but I can’t figure out what’s wrong with it. It is only a few years old and kept in very good condition.

Wednesday passed in a blur. Thursday was my birthday and my kids were so incredibly sweet. Each class sang “Happy Birthday” followed by four encores in Spanish. I had two of the most thoughtful cards from two of my girls. They made me cry! I laminated them and I’m going to frame them. My mom, youngest brother, and I went out for my birthday while The Man finally returned to work that night. I also received a message that night from a previous coworker that I needed to go visit another who is on the brink of life. It was heartbreaking news as I adore these two ladies and they are great friends. On Saturday morning, about 20 minutes before getting out of bed to start getting ready to go visit her (a planned makeover, puzzles, and more in store), I received word not to come. She had passed in the night. Linda told me she and her husband had visited Friday night and prayed with her, and Linda told her she didn’t have to keep holding on for her sake. If she wanted to go, she could. So she did. I know she died of a broken heart, living these past two years without her husband. While my heart is broken and I’m struggling with my grief, I know she is at peace and with her beloved husband.

The ruckus from last week hasn’t settled down. We were tasked with spending Title I money on classroom libraries, and my and my partner’s requests were denied for being $2.15 over our allotted budget. The justification was to allow all in our department to purchase the maximum they can. Three already have, and I have the order of one of those whose already received her books. She had nearly $16 remaining from her budget. Knowing that there is plenty of money left from others’ orders that were under budget, and trying to claim otherwise, is just pure petty behavior. There will be no apology for it, either. Like there wasn’t for last week.

I had my last diabetes class on Friday morning. I will say I was resolutely opposed to these classes, and now I’m going to miss them. This last one was kind of a waste. A focus on stress and listing all the different types of medicines and insulin and learning how to use an insulin pen (which I don’t have, but my work partner does). My A1C has gone down a little and is now 6.2. My “bad” cholesterol also went down 45 points. However, my triglycerides went up 50 points and is now 30 points over the acceptable limit. I’ve made the switch to 1% milk and I’m working on eating hamburgers entirely bunless. I’ve been doing pretty good with eating breakfast at least 4 days a week. I have lost six pounds since I got my CPAP on the 9th.

I still have an ear infections and still hear the crackling in my ears. The pressure has subsided, but the infection persists.  I already did a 5 day round of antibiotics, and now I’m on a 7 day round of SUPER antibiotics. My doctor joked “You’re getting the big boys. GOOD stuff.” I only have two more doses, and I am confident in saying that he will be sending me to the ENT because I don’t think it’s going to magically disappear in two days when I’ve had it for 3+ weeks.

I had planned to write all three of my reviews on Monday, as well as doing my next round of Beyond the Books posts, but I got caught up in working in my bullet journal for hours. At least now I have all of March’s layouts completed and ready to go! I did buckle down and write my reviews on Tuesday and I felt such relief to get that task off my plate! Late last night I finished Wallflower Most Wanted and started in on my next book, A Devil in Scotland. My priority today is to get my February and March bullet journal posts scheduled and to write my review for Wallflower Most Wanted. Then I need to work on the rest of my March posts.

  • Monday
    • Review ~ Five Days, Five Kisses
  • Tuesday
    • Top Ten Tuesday ~ I Could Re-Read Forever
    • Teaser Tuesday & Intro ~ A Wedding at Two Love Lane
  • Wednesday
    • WWW Wednesday
    • My Favorite ~ Childhood Movie
  • Thursday
    • Beyond the Books ~ Read Across America
  • Friday
    • Book Blogger Hop ~ 3.2.18

Check back soon!


Book Blogger Hop ~ 2.23.18


The Book Blogger Hop is a weekly meme hosted by Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer. Each week poses a book-related question. The hop starts on Friday and ends on Thursday. The purpose is to give bloggers a chance to follow other blogs, learn about new books, befriend other bloggers, and receive new followers.

Do you read hardcovers with the dust jacket on or off? Why or why not? submitted by (submitted by Maria @ A Night’s Dream of Books)


I struggle reading a hardcover book with the dust jacket on. So if it is a library book, of course it stays on. But if it is my own book or book of a friend, I will take the dust jacket off while reading. It is easier than fighting it every time you pick it up or put it down.

Beyond the Books ~ Kids & Social Media


Beyond the Books is a weekly meme hosted by Karen @ KissinBlueKaren. Each week features a new topic (mostly non-bookish). This meme is a fun, social weekly post.

This Week’s Topic:

Kids & Social Media – Rules, Your Thoughts, Is It Changing Kids for the Better, etc.


Like all things, in moderation is best. Too much of a good thing can have negative consequences. I think there is too much of a wide array of social media and other duplicitous apps out there to hide kids’ content from parents and send files, photos, locations, and more “anonymously”.


The Rules

My kids are not getting cell phones until they are 12-14. I want to ensure they have a strong family foundation and I have the time and opportunity to teach them the appropriate and proper ways to interact and respond in person as well as online. You also have to teach your children about online safety, cyberbulling, and also teach how to be a strong, self-confident individual independent of social media.

  • Screen time is monitored and limited.
  • They cannot download an app without approval.
  • The only social media apps my kids will be allowed to have are Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. There will be no Snapchat or other strange apps to send content to other users.
  • They have to share their passwords with me.
  • I will do random phone checks. The first time a password does not work, phone goes to jail.
  • All electronics plugged in to the charger in my bedroom at 8:30 pm. (Yes, that means my kids will learn how to use an actual alarm clock.)

The Research 

  •  There is research that social media is affecting our brains, particularly its plasticity (the way the brain grows and changes after experiencing different things).
  • Positive attention on social media (“likes”) shows significantly greater activation in parts of the brain’s reward circuitry. This is the same thing in our brain that reacts to a photo of a loved one. This can lead to positive and negative peer influences.
  • Social media and other screen time can be addictive.
  • The social interaction with others is dying out as social media interaction replaces face-to-face. Subtle gestures and facial expressions are like a new language to read and speak.
  • Social media can cause teens to lose touch with their family foundation as they attach more and more to their peers.

Here is a really good resource on monitoring your child’s social media.

Discussion: YA vs. NA vs. Contemporary

YA vs. NA vs. Contemporary 

I have had a problem distinguishing new adult and contemporary reads. Ever since these two terms were introduced a few years ago, I didn’t delve too far into them or put much stock in the terms or new niche genres. Mostly because I didn’t understand them and how they were different. There’s been some contention about YA vs. NA that I’ve come across, too.

I’ve read some articles arguing that YA is not a genre, it is a category filled with a range of genres (romance, paranormal, fantasy, thriller, etc.). I don’t think I agree with that statement. YA is most definitely a defined genre that has seen exponential growth in the last decade, most notably with authors like Stephanie Meyer and Rick Riordan at the forefront.

There has been controversy over YA in recent years, with a negative perception of adults who read YA. There has been great backlash from adult YA readers, and I am in total agreement. You can read whatever you want to read. As an educator, I still use children’s picture books to teach middle schoolers. And they love it! Your age does not define what you are allowed or not allowed to read.

As a genre, YA is published for readers in their youth to bridge the gap between children’s literature or middle grades literature and adult literature. It is typically written for ages 12-18 and it may contain adult themes and topics. Often I have discovered there is a societal issue at stake in YA books.

NA and contemporary seem too similar to me to differentiate. What is the difference? NA is loosely defined as having protagonists aged 18-30. Researching more details, I found this great passage about NA:

Suddenly thrust into a wealth of new responsibilities and their own legal agency, it’s no wonder that new adults face struggles that both their underage peers and older adults with well-established careers, families, and lifestyles don’t.

Everything that takes place in the life of a new adult is, indeed, new; it can be difficult for them to find their footing in many aspects of their new adult life, which is exactly what NA books address…or rather, what you’d think NA books would address.

Unfortunately, when NA books emerged roughly ten years ago, they did so almost exclusively with plots that can rather unanimously be summed up as “Young Adult fiction with explicit sex.”

In other words, NA mainly consisted of erotica set most often within universities where Greek life clichés reigned and no one actually matured into adulthood.

Ultimately, NA is about the perspective of a new adult learning to navigate the world independently, including being responsible for one’s self. Settings like going to college or entering your first career are common for NA books. Other themes include exploring the depths of friendships and relationships, understanding about mental health or abuse, discovering local social issues. It is the adult coming-of-age experience that crosses that threshold from youth to full fledged adult.

What about contemporary? 

Contemporary is a sub-genre of romance novels, set during the time they are written. Thus, they reflect the aspects of the time. So I’ve been using this term incorrectly for a couple years. I consider anything set in current times to be contemporary. Don’t you?

Then I’ve read that contemporary is realistic fiction depicting our world and society, growing up and confronting personal and social problems. Ultimately, a novel of understanding yourself and others.

So…is it strictly following the romance genre or not? The questions then arise, what do you all outdated contemporary books? Classic contemporary? Realistic fiction? As one individual put it, “Although classic seems to infer that the books are well-known and well loved, which may not necessarily be the case for just “old” books. ”

I’m still left wondering what exactly distinguishes contemporary.

Do you believe YA is a genre or a category? What do you consider contemporary? What should outdated contemporary be called?