2016 Love-a-Thon Mini Challenge: Mix and Match

Posted February 20, 2016 / Personal / Information / Etc. / 28 Comments

loveathonIf you aren’t familiar with the Love-a-Thon, check out the the sign-up post

Mini Challenge: Mix and Match

Objective: We all love books, but there are other things we’re passionate about too! Mash-up a non-bookish hobby/passion/talent/fandom with your bookish life. Do it through photos, art, videos, etc. Get as creative as you’d like!

One of my goals for 2016 was to actually read less. I am somewhat succeeding with this so far. Instead of reading nonstop, I take breaks to binge shows and re-watch the Marvel movies with Chris, decorate my planner, start a bullet journal, and get back into Lego. I’ll be highlighting all of these fandoms, hobbies, and passions below… and connecting them to books!

legoOne of my bigger hobbies (and I mean this just by sheer volume of Lego bricks within my apartment) is Lego. My boyfriend, Chris, and I collect sets, come up with our own creations (the Lego term for this is “MOC,” or “my own creation”), and build together. Here’s one project I worked on completely by myself: a Disney Princess apartment building. The pictures are terrible, so I apologize, but hopefully you see the idea. Lego has Princess sets out right now, so I took some of mine and reworked a lot of the elements. I made the entire building myself. It has three floors and contains beds for multiple princesses: Rapunzel, Cinderella, Ariel, Jasmine, Aurora, Elsa, and Anna. Each of their rooms and beds are reminiscent of the characters themselves and feature pieces from their Lego sets… but the entire build is done by me.

lego houseSo, with this, I figured I would “mix and match” my Lego hobby with fairytale retellings I’ve read, and some I plan to read! Here are the retellings that I’ve generally enjoyed. I haven’t read many, so I can’t lie and say they were all 4 or 5 star reads… but they were all pretty good enough to recommend and feature here 😉

merm slepThe Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler
Princess of Thorns by Stacey Jay • Cress by Marissa MeyercinderellaElla Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine • Cinder by Marissa Meyer
Damsel Distressed by Kelsey Macke

snow whitebeautyWinter by Marissa Meyer • Mirrored by Alex Flinn
Of Beast and Beauty by Stacey Jay • A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

on my tbr

I definitely have a LOT of retellings on my TBR as well! Have you read any of these? (I started Ash & Bramble but didn’t have time to finish before I needed to send the book back to its owner. I hope to pick it up again at some point!)

marvelWe’ve been really Marvel-hyped lately. This relates to books in general, as this is our current Marvel collection of graphic novels (picture below). We also have this cool metal vintage-looking comic book covers to put up and decorate! You can see Spiderman here, but we have a few more hanging out, ready to go up on the wall.2016-02-19 20.17.35

Other than reading the graphic novels and adding to our Marvel collection, we have been doing the following Marvel-related ~things~ around our apartment and outside:marvel doingYep, all of this has happened over the past few months. It’s been a lot of fun!  Are you a Marvel fan? It’s okay if you like DC more… I won’t hold it against you 😉  I’m excited for Suicide Squad and Batman vs. Superman too. Any recommendations for more comics to read??

planningI’ve talked a lot about how I organize my bookish activities, and I find that I’m always improving and altering them. Lately, I’ve acquired a new journaling/planning system. I plan to go in more detail on this within the next few weeks on the blog as a part of my organizational series. If you’re curious, here are some more detailed posts about my somewhat organized life:

Organization Series: Book Bag • Traveler’s Notebook • Planners Reading Notebook • Goodreads

One of my major hobbies lately is planning. I love decorating my planner with stickers, washi, and other pretty colored things. I’ve also started bullet journaling to keep organized with everything in my life. As I said in my planner-related post, I use a Happy Planner for life and blog things, Day Designer for work meetings and tasks, bullet journal for everything rolled into one (plus future planning), spiral-bound notebook for book notes while reading, and Foxy Fix Traveler’s Notebook for bookish things. Here are some pictures of my planners:

2016-02-16 07.27.462016-02-14 10.48.142016-02-16 19.58.142016-02-18 20.37.24

I’ll definitely be talking more about my bullet journal because it’s kind of a new obsession, but the point of me sharing my planning stuff is to explain how it helps me read and organize my bookish activities. Here are some methods I use to keep my blog/reading going strong:

google docsexcelcalendarI use Crini’s spreadsheet to track books as I read them. I get such amazing automated statistics using her sheets every year! The picture you can kind of see above shows the first page of the spreadsheet, but the other sheets inside it have SO MANY stats and lists and wonderful things. I also use Google Calendar to put my blog posts in. The reason I don’t do this on paper is because I change them around A LOT. I move things based on what I think makes sense, or if I don’t finish a book by the time I want to. Red is for a review placeholder that hasn’t been written yet, green is for a completed and scheduled review, pink is usually a discussion post of some kind, purple is for Book Buddies reviews, yellow is for Bookmark Lit Bulletins, orange is for memes, and the rest of the colors are for random things.
bullet journal2016-02-19 20.19.18Again, more on this journaling system later! For now, you can get a peek inside and see how I track my daily reads. I just like to keep track of what I’m reading and listening to – obviously you can tell which is which based on the symbols there! My bullet journal is for daily tasks, to-do lists, and tracking information.reading notebook2015-12-19 09.30.58I bought the spiral-bound notebook with #CurrentlyReading on it from Evie’s shop. I liked using my Foxy Fix to store a bunch of notebooks, but it was stopping me from using it too often. I was sick of the whole thing shutting because the leather was too stiff. I don’t like writing in notebooks like that; I need it to be flat or spiral-bound. So, here’s my new reading notebook! I use it, obviously, while I read. (My reviews are a million times better when I take notes!)foxy fix2015-09-21 22.31.20I’ve already shown lots of pictures of my traveler’s notebook, so this is all for now! I shared this picture a few months ago during a TTT. I wanted to get into the habit of varying my TBR like Andi does, by using categories. I didn’t do the best job of sticking with it. I’m just terrible with sticking to any kind of reading order system! Regardless, when I have busy reading times (towards the end of the month I have more “required” reading for Book Buddies and my real-life Book Club), it helps to remind myself what needs to be read and when. Right now, I’ve had a total of 5 books I needed to read within one week. Kind of insane. My TBR journal  helps with that, plus I keep all of my bookmarks and other notes for my blog in here.happy planner2016-02-19 20.19.44My Happy Planner involves all the cute, colorful stuff. I keep everything in this. I like to have a little running list of the books I’ve read or am reading within the week on the left side of the layout. I have some fun book stickers and just got some “books read” stickers to put across the line. I also write my blog posts in the morning section of each day.

tvMy favorite thing lately is to just hang out on the couch with Chris and watch shows. We used to be insane binge-watchers in our old apartment, but for some odd reason we don’t do it as often anymore. I don’t know why I’m blaming this on the new apartment, but hey, whatever. I’ve decided to do some mixing and matching of my current television shows with books that somewhat remind me of them. Or at least bookish recommendations based on the show? Many of them are not THAT related but WHATEVER MAN. Mixing and matching, it is! hist fic badass football aziz sunny open

This was easily one of the most fun posts I’ve put together in a while! What do you think? Any recs or comments for me?!

28 responses to “2016 Love-a-Thon Mini Challenge: Mix and Match

  1. I’m fangirling so much, because I love all things planner and productivity and I’m so glad I discovered your blog (thank you, Love-A-Thon!!)!

    I use the A Beautiful Mess academic planner and Google Calendar for personal stuff, Evernote for my blog, Trello for my bookish plans and I recently started a bullet journal for University. 🙂

    Also, I really loved your television series bit, mostly because it features some of my favorite shows and favorite books. I am obsessed with Friday Night Lights, so when I head about Cora Carmack’s football themed NA books, I knew that I would have to get my hands to them. After reading them, Silas is definitely my favorite, mostly because he reminds me of Tim Riggins (who is one of my favorite fictional guys EVER!)

    I also love Master of None – haven’t read Modern Romance yet, but I have it on my iPad, so hopefully soon I have a chance to read it. I also absolutely loved Open Road Summer, and have been meaning for check It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia for a while now. The whole “people doing terrible things” kind of reminds me of Seinfeld, which is one of my favorite classic sitcoms, so that definitely makes me even more curious.

    • Thank you!!
      Friday Night Lights is the best and I LOVE Tim! I’m only in season 2 right now so I need to get going.
      Master of None and Modern Romance are super similar in the BEST ways! Be warned, Modern Romance is really sociology-driven and not AS funny as I hoped. Still oved it!

    These are some pretty awesome hobbies. I love them all. I have always enjoyed Legos, but never really had any. Then my 9 year old daughter became OBSESSED a few years ago and we now have almost all of the Princess sets (only missing Cinderella’s carriage and one of the new Frozen ones with Anna/Kristoff/Sven). She also loves to create her own things and it is so much fun seeing the end result. Love it!
    (I just showed her your picture and she said “Oh my gosh that is SO AWESOME! Can you get me instructions? I need to go make one now.”)
    Also, I love Retellings! There are several you have listed that I still need to read.
    I am using that spreadsheet this year to and it is AWESOME! Crini did an amazing job creating it. I love using it. I even made an extra copy in Google Docs and started inputting the info for last year’s books. I love it.
    Also yay for planners! I have been a planner person since I was in High School. I use mine as a planner/journal.
    I love your pictures! Awesome post! 😀

    • I’m missing a few Lego Princess sets as well! It’s an expensive hobby but a lot of fun. I wish I could give instructions but I just kind of built it from my head in a few sittings, haha!
      The spreadsheet is my favorite organizational tool! So so helpful, especially for compiling wrap-up posts with statistics.

  4. I’m, like, dying over how organized you are! Can you be my official planner because every time I get planners I use them for the first hour I get them, and then completely forget about them! I try to stay organized and use journals and stuff, but I just keep forgetting! Any tips for remembering to write in them daily?
    I love how your incorporated your love of books into so many things – it’s awesome!

    • Haha I usually have this issue with planners too, trust me! Finding one that works and sticks for you is really hard. I think the biggest thing is to write EVERYTHING in them. For me, keeping all of my to-do lists in one spot instead of on sticky notes is key.

  5. Girl, your post is SO kick-ass (though I kind of knew it was going to be, since your posts are always fabulous)! I love the Lego apartment, and think it’s so cool that you made it yourself and customized it a bit to cater to each princess. I also really love seeing your organization methods! Even though mine is completely different, I totally geek out (and occasionally get ideas) over other people’s methods. I really like seeing how organized yours list across multiple planners/notebooks – you should teach me your ways! Also, I’m obsessed with bullet journaling as well. Haven’t quite committed to buying the actual notebook I want to use for it, but I have started one in one of my spare notebooks, and I’m LOVING it. It really helps me stay on top of things!

    My husband and I are both huge Marvel fans (him even more than me), and we’re so excited about all the Marvel stuff we are getting (movies, comics, shows). That brings me to.. .Agent Carter, who is freaking amazing, and who I absolutely love. (I really need to catch up on the latest season!)

    LOVED your post <3 <3 <3

    • THANK YOU <3
      I've loved trying to organize myself better this year and it's working well so far. I need to get back into my Foxy Dori though! That's the one I really need to improve. Bullet journaling is sooo fun and really, really helpful!
      MARVELLLLL. It's been such a fun obsession lately! Agent Carter is a badass. We need to get going on season 2!

  6. This post is amazing and like so many goals!!! lol I use an EC vertical planner right now but don’t always decorate it because of timing. I do track what I’m currently reading/want to read that week and also when I finish a book. But geez those spreadsheets look amazing and I’m so jealous of them and your organizational ability! haha I’m still working on mine 🙂 I’ve fallen a bit behind on the Marvel world but hoping to catch up TV Show & Movie-wise. Also that Lego Apartment Building is fantastic! Such skills 😀

    • I know what you mean, Decorating it can take a LONG time! I’ve simplified my layouts so they’re functional but have a few cute decorations.
      Thank you about the Lego! It took a long time to work on haha.

  7. I love your legos! Omg that is so cool that you did that! Also I love your journals and planner! I like looking at bullet journals pics but I am so bad at doing crafty things like that. And yay marvel! I like your fairytale picks too!

  8. I think your blog is going to be my new obsession! I love your ʻCurrently Readingʻ notebook–itʻs the cutest. And I agree, my reviews tend to be sooo much better when Iʻm taking notes. Probably because it keeps all of my thoughts organized instead of all over the place and crazy.

  9. Love your Lego creation! What a fun hobby! I’m obsessed with marvel myself, but I haven’t ventured into the comics yet. They’re intimidating because there are so many!
    I’m a big planner myself and just started my first bullet journal this year. It’s a combo planner and organizer for all things books and blogging. I wrote up a post about it last month. I’ve started using the Google calendar this month and that’s been working on well for me too. I couldn’t do enough long-term planning with the bullet journal so I had to try something else out to keep track of blog tours and such 🙂

    I loved Modern Romance! I listened to the audiobook during my holiday traveling in December and really liked it. I’ve seen a couple episodes of Aziz’s new show and I’m enjoying that so far too.

    Amber @ Book Stacks Amber recently posted: Love-A-Thon Mix and Match: Soundtrack Saturday- Ugly Love
    • Thank you! There are SO MANY Marvel comics out there. It’s hard to keep track of the order and when things take place haha.
      Bullet journaling is the best — definitely headed to check out your post.
      Blogging is easier for me to plan in the Google Calendar because I move things around sooo much.

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