While at the beginning of every month, I take the time to consider my successes from the previous month as an IWSG member, approximately halfway through each month I like to take the time to consider what I have been up to, the music, movies, books, DIY projects, and events, that have entertained and amused me as well as taken up all of my time.

Listening to: DNCE - "Cake By the Ocean Floor"

What? It's a fun song!

And mixing it up with Charlie Puth's "One Call Away".

A photo posted by Mandy on

Remembering: my fun weekend (this past weekend!) in Charleston – sunsets, good food, and spending time with family. :)

Photo of the Blue Ridge Mountains near Asheville
courtesy of Christopher Sessums
via Creative Commons.

Planning: a trip to Asheville later this month, a trip to NYC and France in July.

For Asheville, we will be staying on the Biltmore Estates property, which is kind of a dream come true. Hotels there typically cost more than we are willing to pay, but thanks to Travelzoo, Justin and I got a good price! :)

July plans are less set in stone. I think we're hoping to see the view from the top of the One World Trade Center as well as check out Queens and Brooklyn, New York. We have two nights of hotel rooms booked from a while back, so I have one more night to pay for as well as a well-priced flight. 😕

And I think, for France, we will be exploring Paris (again) and the Brittany coast. I only have three definite plans in place – a day in Giverny to see the Monet Gardens, a boat ride on the Seine River at sunset, and a day at Saint-Malo. And of course, if we are on the Brittany coast of France, we will have to eat a crêpe. That's a must, right? :)

Daydreaming of: popcorn and the movies. I want to see Captain America: Civil War and Alice Through the Looking Glass. They look like they will be really good! :)

(I want Iron Man to win in Civil War, but due to the title, I'm doubting he will. 😞 )

Photo courtesy of Simon_sees via Creative Commons.

Interested to Know: if I would be accepted for a lower interest rate loan to help me pay off my student loans faster. With my odd jobs, I'm not sure I would, but I wish I could. :-/ Even shaving a couple of months off would be worth it! My credit score is just shy of 800!

Urban Outfitters Ecoté Slouchy Cowl Neck Sweater
Original: $50 Final Cut: $20

Shopping: Justin took me to Final Cut last weekend, and I got some great winter attire for that European vacation we are taking in late December. :) A new (warm, soft) sweater + gloves (that you can use a phone with!). And a bra, because you needed/wanted to know that. (It was $5 vs. the $28 I would have had to pay in a traditional store!) Total spent: $29 with tax. I just wish I had had more time to peruse the boxes…

Photo courtesy of Phil Romans via Creative Commons.

Baking: delicious Doubletree (as in the hotel) chocolate chip cookies whose recipe we found in Todd Wilbur's The Best of Top Secret Recipes, a cookbook we were given as a Christmas gift from Justin's grandmother. Justin subbed pecans in the recipe instead of walnuts and ohmyheavens! those cookies were delicious! I don't think they taste anything like Doubletree cookies, but that's okay. I'd make them again anyway!

Photo courtesy of Esin via Creative Commons.

Reading: 15 million books. In the next month, I'm suppose to review Charlie E. Moore and Timothy Keiderling's Bearing Witness, Bryan Peterson's Understanding Exposure, and James Roman's Chronicles of Old New York. Ahh! So much to read, so little time! :)

What have you been up to so far this month? Anything particularly exciting or noteworthy? Have you seen any great movies or read any books that you haven't been able to put down? Have you been planning awesome vacations or daydreaming of date nights?


  1. I've been listening to Cake By the Ocean Floor while going through your post, what an uplifting song! I needed some pick-me-up, it is a "I am on my third cup of coffee kinda day"! (Starting to work on a post on the caffeine, btw)
    Love your topics: shopping, traveling, baking 😎 So glad I found you! 💖

  2. This month I've been fighting with the cable company and trying to get back to writing and figuring out what to knit. Sounds like things are going well for you.

  3. I love this round up. I listened to Cake By the Ocean Floor while going through your post. I saw 'Captain America Civil War' for my birthday but 'Alice Through the Looking Glass' is also on my list.


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