Fall 2020 FabFitFun Unboxing

Hey hey, it’s MJ, 

            It’s that time of year again FabFitFun time and it’s a great time. I am pre-writing a lot of posts just because I have the time on my hands and maybe I still have some creative spark left in me because y’all the world is tiring. 

            I loved everything I got in this box, hands down one of my favorite boxes so far! I will say this first and foremost just to get it out of the way because it was on my mind, so in total you get 8 items and there were a potential of 38 items and that is a lot, there used to be a few items that everyone got and I kind of liked that, there was less choice and it was kind of nice to know that everyone got a few really cool things that were picked for everyone and there wasn’t a choice that you could have gotten instead, but things change and companies change so I cannot begrudge them changing and evolving to suit the needs of their fan base and customers. 

            Seriously though, that is my only complaint and the rest of it is amazing. They are moving to be more environmentally friendly with different box sizes and less paper and confetti that used to come in the box so again good for you triple F looking out for the planet. Also I love the box, the design and the fact that they are changing them to again be more environmentally conscious. 

My one complaint, the shipping label on the top so I don’t get the full nice box top, also I didn’t want to dox my own address so I blacked it out because, duh.

            This box was worth anywhere between $214-$544 and like usual I am not going to tell you the exact value of my personal box but it was up there so I was happy about that because who doesn’t love more bang for their buck?

            So what did I get? I will list all the choices at the end of the potential other items and let you know all sorts of things as I go because as always these are all my opinions and that’s how it always will be, so here we go. 

Botkier New York Trigger Backpack:

            I chose this one and I didn’t think about choosing anything else in this category, I love backpacks; I usually carry a backpack but sometimes it’s just too big. So having a mini-backpack to just carry around was right up my street. It’s a leather flap and an I think nylon bottom with cute little front zip pockets. I cannot wait to get around to using it for all of my daily travels (you know when we get to travel again) so this was the choice that fit my style the most. What were the other options that I could have chosen, Botkier New York Bond Tote, Foxybae 25mm Black Curling Wand, Stila Stay All Day Eyeliner and Huge Extreme Lash Mascara, Uncommon James Set of 2 Copper Canisters, Sachajuan Styling and Finishing Cream, Mila Mélange Foldable Cotton Basket. 

Soia & Kyo Woven Scarfigan with Fringe

            I chose this one too, scarfigan is just a really fun word to say and it’s so cozy and soft. I was wearing it around my apartment last night and I am already obsessed with it. I hope unlike the last cardigan that I got from one of these boxes it doesn’t shed to high heaven. It’s super cute and right now it’s sitting very dramatically on the edge of the chair in my office, I love it so much already because there was some pause about what to choose with this selection and this was the choice that just felt more right to me and I am so glad that I did. The other choices were the Beyond Yoga Hidden Pocket Infinity Scarf, Glossmetics Hair Removal Device, Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare Alpha Beta Rose Perfecting and Refining Serum, Volition Beauty Celery Green Cream, or the Erno Laszlo Pore Cleansing Clay Mask.

Jenny Bird Leana Pendant:

            This is was last thing that I chose and I was happy with this one as well, I like necklaces and this one is simple and I love it, it’s a double chain with a single silver pendant and it’s so up my street. I like jewelry but when you work with elementary aged kids their first instinct is to grab things that hang so I don’t wear jewelry very frequently and that’s okay because when I get to wear it some of the pieces I have gotten from FabFitFun are my go-to’s. Probably because they are simple and fun but also most of them I have chosen which is always a plus in my book. The pendant actually has a good weight to it and that is always good with jewelry; for it to not feel cheap and flimsy. The other options were the Jenny Bird Austin Cuff, Vitamasques Multivitamin Mask Set, Nectar Sunglasses Blue Light Blocking Glasses in Brown Tortiose, Beauty Bakerie Proof is in the Puddin’ Palette. (which I got in my winter box last year and love!)

Masontops Glass Water Bottle with Neoprene in Turquoise:

            I was hoping to get this one because I love reusable water bottles, I try really hard to not use single use plastic if I can, recycle if I cannot, and this water bottle is actually really cool. It’s also a two cup mason jar if you take the sleeve off and I love a multitasking item. There is of course a lot of sustainable drinkware out there but this one is super cool in my book. I feel like there isn’t much to say about it though, it’s a water bottle but also a mason jar and it’s as simple as that. The other options were the Anastasia Beverly Hills Clear Brow Gel, Skin&Co Roma Truffle Therapy Whipped Cleansing Cream, Feel Beauty Renewed Pumpkin Walnut Facial Cleaners, or the frank body Original Coffee Scrub.

NCLA So Rich Cuticle Oil in Horchata: 

            In high school I worked in a nail salon and I for sure took better care of my nails, they are a mess now and it’s fine for me, but we are getting to the time of year where my hands will dry out and my cuticles will shred themselves so having this is actually really good for my cuticles moving forward into the fall and winter. I don’t know why it’s horchata scented, it’s not a bad smell but when I think of nail products I think of essential oils, lavender and things like that, soft spa scents. I like it though and it makes my cuticles feel nice and moisturized. The other options for this were the HIP cutlery Set, Likwid Rx Stress Reliever 100% Natural Ayurvedic Hair Oil, 8 Other Reasons Runway Clip Trio, Harper+Ari Exfoliating Sugar Cubes in Juice Cleanse. (I have this one I got it in my fall 2019 box and I like them) (In brief side note, I had to look up what post that was in and man my posts have become a lot different since then and I’m not mad about it, not one little bit.)

Voesh New York Pedicure in a Box Duo-Pumpkin Spice:

            I mean, I guess Pumpkin Spice everything really is a thing, now don’t get me wrong I love pumpkin spice but for a pedicure; sure why not? Again worked in a nail salon I used to get pedicures, I haven’t had a professional pedicure since the end of 2011 or the beginning of 2012, it’s been a while y’all but having something where I can do a pretty good job at home is not a bad thing in my book. Like it sounds like it has a lot of boog vitamins and stuff in it so I am excited to give it a try. The other options were either The Laundress New York Crease Release or the Spongellé Boxed Flower in Sweet Cedarwood.

Stone Candles Room Spray in Santal Noir:

            I love room spray’s, there is no secret with that I have a bunch of them but let’s be real they are Glade and Febreeze so having a more boujee one is not a bad thing and it smells good with notes of sandalwood and cardamom. It’s beautifully simple packaging makes it something you could put in plain sight and unless someone was really looking at it they wouldn’t know it was room spray. The other options were the Stone Candle Room Spray in Pumpkin Spice (which would have been cool too), NatureLab. Tokyo Perfect Repair Treatment Masque, or the Hythe Tranquility Sleep Mist. 

The Beauty Crop Glow Milk in Blind Date:

            The packaging is a little milk carton with cow spots and I love it! Also the shade is beautiful a rose gold champagne and a little really goes a long way, I know I got a little more than planned when I was swatching it and it covered most of the back of my palm and three of my finger tips on the other hand so be careful with it. Seriously though, the packaging is next level and it’s some of my favorite packaging in a while with any products so congrats, I love it. The other options were either the Beauty Papier Golden Superfood Shower Gel or the ZiGi &MARAiS Pouch with Stripe. 

            Overall this box per usual blew me out of the water and I loved it, keep doing what you do FabFitFun because whatever it is, it’s working.

Wanna check out my other FabFitFun posts from this year, you can! They are pretty fun if i do say so myself, spring and summer for 2020.

            Do you subscribe? Did you like everything you got? Any products that you were over the moon excited to receive?

            I will see everyone later in the week with another post so until then, have a great week!

            -MJ

September 2020 IPSY Glam Bag Unboxing

Hey hey, it’s MJ,

            Okay so let’s be honest, I still don’t know how I feel about the new Glam Bag Plus experience. I wish that there would just be a list of options that you could pick and you picked three from a larger list because this limited choice nonsense doesn’t work for me. No, instead it’s like we give you four choices like this is a multiple choice test and you have to pick what you want out of those four because sometimes out of those four you don’t want any of them. Also I went to customize right after I got the email and one of the options was already sold out. That seems like poor planning. I wanted a set of masks because I like sheet masks and they were gone already, plan ahead for all of the options because then instead of all four options I only had three and that doesn’t seem fair for something I pay for every month. I know it’s only the second month and they are still working out the bugs but it is kind of annoying to want something or get excited for something and it not be something that you can actually obtain. Bait and switch and that’s not good business practice, yes I also know its first come first serve but it should not have been an option for me if it wasn’t available to me. 

            I also feel like this is becoming more hit and miss to what I like as opposed to the “personalized” experience they hyped up for the whole month of July before the choices started in August. 

            I will give IPSY this though, they are working with a lot of vegan and cruelty free brands which is a huge win in my book. 

            Also one more things before I get into the meat of this post, I never got a tracking email for this which is irksome and as I am writing this I just got a tracking email for my regular Glam Bag that shipped a few days ago because I checked the website, it should be automatic when it ships that an email goes out, it used to be like that. 

The Bag:

            I feel like I am back in the 90’s with this, I remember wearing corduroy pants to kindergarten because it was the mid-90’s and that was a thing you dressed your children in no matter how annoying they were. But I like the pouch, it’s not even really a bag but it feels very fall to me and I am not upset about that one little bit. 

What did I get?

Nature’s Cartel Cream Eyeshadow Trio 

            The shades are Champagne Scandal, 90’s Nude, and Tan Lines from Tahiti, I am not a big fan of cream eyeshadows and I chose this one because the masks were sold out. I clicked a button and then realized too late what I had chosen so this one was an audible on my part. They are nice colors and I like them but I don’t understand from my beauty profile how this was an option for me, I really want to know how they decide your 12 product selection that you can pick from but I guess I will never know. 

Space Case Cosmetics Quad 

            I like Space Case Cosmetics, I have a few of their single pan shadows and this is my first quad, I love the shade names and in this palette they are, Not Rocket Science, Unicorn Horn, Ghost Entered The Host, and Bella Trix. I did choose this one and I wasn’t unhappy with my choice at all because I know how their eyeshadows have performed in the past. They are mostly shimmer shades which is also fine because they can be combined with the billions of other palette’s I have to create some really cool looks. 

Murad Environmental Shield Essential-C Day Moisture Broad Spectrum SPF 30

            I like Murad and this was the other one that I chose, Murad makes really good skin care, their products usually don’t aggravate my skin but sometimes everything aggravates my skin so I can’t really make a judgement on it until I actually get around to trying it. This one is expensive! So getting it in a bag like this is really great for a budget. 

Context Vitamin C All Day Eye Cream

            They chose this one and the next one, lots of skin care they choose for me which is a little odd especially when it’s brands that I have never heard of, I love expanding my “liked brands” list so I am not upset about it but I wish that these products came in a cardboard carton so I could understand their benefits without going to the company’s website. The packaging is nice and simple and after Googling the website I have learned some things about it and I like what I see so I am looking forward to trying it out. 

Avant Collagen Intense Radiance Activator Serum

            This choice they made for me confused me a little because it’s anti-aging and then I looked on the website and the price for this normally made my jaw drop to the floor, I swear I had to physically close my mouth with my hand because I couldn’t get my jaw to do the work for me. I am excited to try it because I have gotten more and more into serums in 2020 so that is always a plus but for now it is going to go with the rest of my currently waiting to try skin care in my fridge. 

            I liked the bag, like I usually do I just want to complain about it for a minute because that’s how life works sometimes you just need to get that out and then you can see things more objectively. I normally don’t give a “what is my bag worth” number because IPSY for the Glam Bag Plus promises $120+ and I am going to tell you something that Avant Serum is the $120 already but in total my bag was worth $275.58 if I bought all of those today at retail price. So is ISPY worth getting? Yea, I think so you get a really good value for the money you are spending and the products are usually great so if you like makeup and skin care give it a try with either this one or the regular Glam Bag, I don’t know about the Ultimate because I don’t get it, that would be excessive. 

            Want to hear about all the other stuff I have gotten this year so far? You can, just click on the month: January, March, April, May, June, July, and August

            So do you subscribe? How do you feel about the new Glam Bag Plus customization? Let me know! 

            I will see y’all later in the week with another post so until then have a good week! 

                        -MJ

My Current Makeup Organization

Hey hey, it’s MJ,

            This is kind of a continuation to my new makeup set up from last year in a way just because I have gotten more things and that means that I have had to really think about all of the space I have and by that I mean lack of space. Seriously, no storage in this apartment, hopefully someday if the fates line up I will eventually be somewhere better but at the moment it is what it is and there is nothing I can do to change it so I am just dealing with it. 

            So what’s my organization like?

            On the table I have very little, some of my larger palettes, my lipsticks, my all the time brushes, and my foundation and concealer. Fun fact I am actually sitting in front of all my makeup at the moment so make sure that all of this makes sense. I had to clean my makeup table off to actually sit over here so that’s probably a good and bad thing, makes me clean up but doesn’t bode well for the frequency I have been wearing makeup lately. Quarantine and fear have been keeping me from actually playing with my makeup in the last several months. 

            My tips for storage first and foremost, find plastic storage, Home Goods and TJ. Maxx are not bad places to look if you don’t want to pay full price, Amazon if you kind of know what you want, or if you are willing there are places online that specialize in these items, ro so I am told. 

            Desk organization items can also be great tools. To be honest the thing that holds my palettes on my table is a desk organizer, I have one on my desk that holds all my notebooks so do with what you have. 

            My brushes are in a flower pot, I have no idea where it came from but I have it and it’s full of brushes, my other brushes are in a juice glass that I had in my kitchen. Seriously those little Ikea tumbler glasses are great for some many things! Glasses work for tall things. My mascara, lip liners, and misc. other cylindrical objects are in a beaker that I got at Michael’s during Halloween season several years go and I repurposed it for all of that.

            Everything else in my makeup collection is in  a three tiered cart, I got this at Micahel’s as well it’s just a multipurpose crafting cart, you can get them at Ikea too, that’s where my mom got hers that she uses for quilting so find something that can do double or even triple duty if it has to. 

            Top shelf is all palettes because I have a problem, but it fits all of them nicely so I can’t complain. 

            The second shelf is my little basket full of application tools as well as any of the inserts that come out of eyeshadow palettes that give you look ideas. The little basket I got at Wal-Mart and it matches the one in my bathroom, again you can find little wire baskets pretty much anywhere and you can find a size that would work for you.

            The little crate on this shelf should be familiar if you read my bathroom organization post because I have six of these in my bathroom, you even got to see one in my Bullet Journal supplies post but this contains all of my highlighters, bronzers, contour, and blushes because I needed a container to organize all of them. I didn’t want them all loose all over the shelf because that makes me all kinds of anxious. 

            The bottom shelf container is full of all the makeup samples I have gotten from IPSY because again I wanted all of them in one place and knowing that they are all in the same place means that I can add to it or look from something and it’s going to be in there. 

            There are a few loose things on this shelf like my magnetic palette’s which I need to work on because one of them just doesn’t want to hold things, there is a good chance it was the magnet itself that I put on the highlighter pan but still, it’s kind of annoying. 

            So there it is, my organization, it may not work for you but it’s something that has worked for me even though I do my makeup in the bathroom, I am still looking for a good makeup mirror that would make my life so much easier because I am visually challenged and using a mirror like two feet from my face is a challenge. 

            Any tips and tricks? I would love to hear them.

            I will see everyone later in the week with another post so I hope everyone has a good week! 

            -MJ

What do I use in My Bullet Journal?

Hey hey, it’s MJ,

            I have been Bullet journaling to various degrees of success since 2018, that doesn’t feel like it’s been that long ago but it also feels like it’s been about 30 years since then. What I would give to go back to early 2018 and warn myself of what was to come and hope that somehow my timeline wouldn’t still shift into this hellscape we are currently in, I try not to swear but man y’all 2020 has just taken me by the front of my shirt and punched me in the face; repeatedly. 

            That is not the point of this post though but I like my stream of consciousness moments on my blog because it gives all of you reading this a view into my brain, it’s a scary place sometimes. I also just had my first Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew from Starbucks of the season and I am jazzed up on caffeine! 

            I have been Bullet Journaling for almost three years now and that is so hard to believe but this year is the first year where I have actually done all 12 months and I am happy to say that my 2020 Bullet Journal (you can see it so far in updates 1 and 2) is complete.

            What supplies do I use for my bullet journal?

Medium (A5) Leuchtturm 1917 Dotted Journal:

            They make a “bullet journal” version now but I don’t like it so I just buy the normal journal they will run you like $20 at Barnes and Noble, that’s where I get mine. I have had various colors over the years my first was Berry, second was I think a shade called Nordic Blue which was a nice icy light blue, this year is green but it’s not on the Barnes and Noble website anymore so I had to look on the Lecuhtturm website and it’s called Fresh Green, and next year is Powder which is a baby pink. This was the one that was suggested to me by a number of blogs on the internet when I was considering Bullet Journaling at the end of 2017. Thank you Pinterest for getting me hooked on another thing.

Fine line Pens in Various colors:

            I bought mine at Michaels when I started and they don’t actually have them anymore but the brand doesn’t really matter as long as it is colors you like and will use in your journal. I use mine for my habit trackers, my mood tracker, and a whole bunch of various other things in my bullet journal because I love colored pens and these are fine line markers so they are great and they don’t bleed through the paper. Mine came in a set of 20 and I think they were under $10 so find ones that work for your purposes, you don’t have to buy the fancy ones to get good results. Store them tip down they least longer! Sharpie also makes a nice selection of colored Sharpie pens which I also use!

Markers in Various Colors: 

            Again from Michaels in like late 2017 so they are old but they still work for what I need them to do, I use them for covers, for mood trackers, and for a lot of my large lettering. You do not want a large tipped marker though, medium tip at most and you may want to try them to make sure they don’t go through the paper and bleed onto the other side because that’s not fun. I store these tip down as well! 

Highlighters:

            I found pastel highlighters at Wal-Mart in 2018 and have not been able to find them there since which makes me upset because if I need more I will have to order them. I got a set of six from Mild Color and I really like them because I use them to highlight important things as well as making sure I know what week I am in. I use these for more than my bullet journal but they are used primarily there. When I replace them I will probably go with Zebra brand because they also have some really nice pastel highlighters. 

Colored Pencils:

            Does not matter the brand! I have a set that I got for Christmas a few years ago after salivating over it for years but I have a set of 150 Prismacolor colored pencils and I love them. I was so afraid to use them because they are very expensive but I used them for almost every cover if not every cover this year and a few last year and I love them so much! Crayola, RoseArt, any of the regular brands work just as well but I am going to use what I have because I love them so much. 

A straight edge: 

            I didn’t use a ruler until I started on working on my Bullet Journal for next year, I don’t even use a ruler I use the edge of the card that comes with my IPSY bags, it’s folded in half but it’s the perfect size for my Bullet Journal, it makes things look cleaner and I am kicking myself for not using one sooner because it made things SO MUCH easier! 

Washi Tape: 

            I have never bought a full priced tube or pack of Washi Tape I just wait for them to go on clearance and buy them then. I use it for mostly my habit trackers to make the pages look nice but I love the fun of washi tape. 

Stickers and Things: 

            There are a lot of premade journals out there, I love the versatility of a bullet journal because I can create as I go but I always have a bunch of stickers and things at my disposal, some come from those other planners, again clearance section! Why spend more than you have to, I mean really. I love stickers and tiny note pads, I don’t use them too frequently in my Bullet Journal but I have them so I can when I want.

A Good Black Fine Liner Pen:

            This is the MOST IMPORTANT thing for your Bullet Journal, you do a lot of outlining and all of the shapes are mostly a fine line black pen, all of the habit trackers, the weekly spreads, the daily tasks, the calendars that I do, and most of the covers have black outlines or sections and I use a black Sharpie Pen. I love this pen, it is the only one I use for my Bullet Journal and I have used about four since I started Bullet Journaling, I know the one I am using right now is already half gone because I already did the basic pages and layouts for next year so eventually I will have to get out another one. The tip does wear down on this one so the lines for written words sometimes get a little thick but you can always have a second one out just for lettering, which I should but don’t. 

            You don’t have to spend a bunch of money if you want to start Bullet Journaling, it’s supposed to be fun and creative instead of buying a planner that isn’t customizable to you, I love the freedom of a Bullet Journal because there is no set standard you can do whatever you want with it. I used to buy a planner every year because I needed it for school but now that I am out of school (I still have dreams about missing work during my master’s program and I have been out of it for over two years) I have the choice to allow my creativity one more outlet. In college I swore by the Lilly Pulitzer planners and I still would if I was in college because I loved them and they were what I needed at the time. Planners have become such a big craze in the last several years and I got caught up in it. You learn with every new planner, every new year brings new challenges and insights that you learn from years past.

            You can check out all of my other Bullet Journal related posts, I will list them so you can click at will! What I did Differently in my 2019 BuJo, Some of my fave 2018 pages, Some of my fave 2019 pages, and a random update from last year.

            Do you Bullet Journal? Any tips or tricks I am missing that you swear by? Let me know!

            Hope y’all have a great start to your week and I will see you with another post soon!

                        -MJ

MJ’s Bathroom Organization

Hey hey, it’s MJ,

            So truth be told I don’t have a lot of space in my apartment, especially in my bathroom, it’s kind of a mess for someone who likes skin care and everything else so I do require some space and I don’t have it so I have had to get a little creative with the organization of some of my spaces. I got spoiled with the bathroom storage space at my last apartment but things have changed since then. 

            This is just going to be my storage cabinet, I don’t utilize the space under the sink except for cleaning supplies and toilet paper so that’s not a space I go into all that often because it’s just not conducive for organization. 

            All of this is going to make me look like a hoarder and I am aware of that but when you subscribe to a few different beauty and lifestyle boxes this is what happens you accumulate things and so you have to organize things. 

Shelf One/The Bottom Shelf:

            This shelf is for short things mostly or things I use pretty often, this is where I store my everyday makeup essentials as well as some miscellaneous other things besides these two bins, all of these bins are from Walmart and I got them around school supply stock up time but I bet you could still get them in the office supply section and I have a bunch of them used for different things around my apartment because they are the perfect size. 

Bin one: 

            Bin one is body scrubs and facial cleanser plus a few other facial care items like serums and toner. Whenever I run out of a facial cleanser I can reach in and grab one which is kind of nice. I don’t used scrubs all that often but having them in one place makes me life so much easier in the long run. 

Bin two: 

            Bin two is misc. skin care that doesn’t really have another home it’s all of my body care items and some misc. other things, this was one of those bins that I wasn’t really sure what to put in because it was just what was leftover when I sorted everything on the floor of my office one afternoon in like July because I was going stir crazy, I am still stir crazy nothing has changed but at least my bathroom cabinet is organized. 

Shelf Two/ The Middle Shelf:

            This shelf is full of the tall things and the things that I need pretty easy access to, like my hair care everyday items, my dry shampoo, and my lint roller. As well as my rubber ducks, they used to sit on the counter on the sink but I had to move them and I will eventually find them a new home but that today isn’t today.

Bin one:

            This one is facial lotion and hand lotion as well as where I keep all of the non-makeup samples I get from IPSY, it’s a lot of facial lotion and again I have only gotten into really caring about my facial care in the last two or so years and that means that I have accumulated lotions. Also having services like the ISPY Glam Bag Plus can be a pain because you cannot go through a full tube of a facial lotion in one month, there is a part of me that wishes that service was every other month but I digress. My hands are always dry so being able to grab for one to stick in my purse is always really great. 

Bin two:          

            I have a lot of body lotion that I don’t use all that often I forget to do it after I get out of the shower and I need to but some days, it’s just not on my mind. That is actually all that’s in this basket which is insane to me, all of the other bins are a mix of things but this is all body lotion or cream.

Shelf Three/ The Top Shelf:

            Unlike a bar the top shelf is not the best shelf in my bathroom cabinet, this shelf is reserved for things that I don’t use very often. I also store my extra shampoo, conditioner, and deodorant up here but bin wise this is my least used shelf.

Bin one: 

            Alright this bin is all of my excess makeup that I don’t use but I don’t want to get rid of, you pay for a thing and you want to keep it but I have a feeling that this bin will eventually just be dumped because I don’t use this makeup and why keep it?

Bin two: 

            It is what it says it is, nail polish and hair care, odd combination I know but it is what it is. I used to wear a lot more nail polish because I worked in a nail salon so I was surrounded by it for a long time but I don’t wear it so much anymore because I pick at it and peel it off so what’s the point of it? It also houses all of my hair care items, I don’t like having a lot of stuff in my hair, I don’t like my hair feeling dirty and when there is a lot of product in it that’s exactly what it feels like and I am not a fan. 

Bonus: My little copper basket of my skin care routine items.

            This is one of the only things that sits on my bathroom counter all the time and putting it all in a bin really helped me organize the space or at least feel like it’s organized and having this cute little basket that was for spices until about two and a half months ago I have been actually putting things away instead of just leaving them on the counter around my sink. 

            I have for sure had to improvise with space but these bins are great, I have a bin in the fridge full of my sheet masks, I have one for my bullet journal stickers and such, and one that sits in my makeup storage that is full of my blush, bronzer, highlighters, and contour items. They are just really great bins and if you are a small space human like I am finding organization and storage that works for you is most of the battle. 

            I like organizing, it’s something that helps ease my anxiety and I can tell when I am really anxious because all I want to do it organize and reorganize because it gives me control over something so having the ability to organize my spaces does help when I am feeling anxious. Organization keeps me focused and it gets my head back in the right space.

            Any small space organization tips? 

            I will see everyone later in the week with another post, hope you have the best week you can!

            -MJ

MJ’s Writing Tips

Hey hey, it’s MJ,

            So I like writing that’s not a secret to the people who know me in real life. I have completed 12 novels on my own, none of them are published which is fine but that’s a goal though. I enjoy creating worlds and characters out of thin air; it’s a lot of fun for me but I have learned a lot in the seven or eight years that I have been writing long form fiction and I have gotten plenty of advice from authors who write a lot better than I do. My tips aren’t new and ground breaking but they don’t have to be, they are just things I have learned on the way after amassing a shelf full of binders that currently house my completed books which is crazy to think because a lot of work goes into a book. I revise on a cycle so I will usually revisit most books once a year and I can tell how much my writing has changed and evolved since my first publishable (in my opinion) novel was finished in 2014.

            I have been wrestling with even posting this because that’s just who I am as a person, I don’t like to make myself vulnerable and that’s what happens with writing but I promised myself that I needed to be okay with being myself on the internet, full transparency and all that. I am just a person on the other side of a computer, like the reader. I am just a person who has a hobby and enjoys that hobby because writing allows me to be whoever I want to be in whatever world I want to be in so here I am with some of my personal writing tips. 

            These are all just opinions they are not statements of fact or personal attacks on anyone because everyone has a different writing style but these are things that have helped me over time become a better writer in my own mind. 

  1. Don’t take yourself too seriously.

Your first draft can be absolute garbage as long as it exists, it is like a super power to be able to put thousands and thousands of words down on paper and have it become something, so not everything has to be perfect in that first draft. That is what revisions are for! 

2. Take breaks

I used to want to write straight through a novel, not take breaks, not focus on any other writing project but I am going to be honest that worked when I was in college and writing was a break from my studies but as I started to write more I found myself getting ideas randomly in the middle of other projects and you have to get those ideas down so you don’t lose them. Sometimes working on another project gives you ideas for the project that you have put a pin in and so for me taking breaks is not always a bad thing. 

3. Stay organized

I have a binder for each book or series I am working on at the moment. I have a binder with just outlines, major characters for each book or series, birthday’s in a calendar that I ignore the year on, and other visuals that I need for my general knowledge. The binder for each series contains the outline, characters, visuals, world building, and other important information that is just for that novel. I used to keep a more thorough outline/idea notebook but it doesn’t serve my purposes anymore because I am not writing those books at the moment so I outline on my computer and each novel or series has its own folder in my expansive folder system.

Also with this one, keep a notebook or something on you in case you get a flash of an idea or dialogue and you aren’t near your computer. I use the notes app on my phone and it has made sure that I don’t lose my little ideas or even big ideas when I am not near my laptop. 

4. Do your research

I have spent forty five minutes researching information for one paragraph. My Google search history looks insane and I know it and I know that sometimes I don’t get all the information when I need it. I make notes as I go to look things up if I am on a roll and can’t stop writing because I will lose my train of thought and then I will just lose all motivation. It bothers me when things are overlooked or incorrect or it’s clear that the person writing just pulled it out and thought they knew something when they didn’t. 

Google Search Terms when I was working on a novel last year: 

  1. Shakespearean attire
  2. Average number of pages in a movie script
  3. Provinces of Canada
  4. Airports in England
  5. How long is Hamlet
  6. Does Toronto have a plastic bag tax

That was also all for about two scenes because they were things that I didn’t know and I wanted to make sure that I was getting things correct. 

5. You don’t have to write every day

I wrote somewhere around 530,000 words last year between my own projects, projects with other, and blog posts. I have surpassed that this year just because I am working on projects with others. While I say that I will say there are some days where I write 6,000+ words and other days where I stare at my laptop and write the words “she walked” three times in one sentence because I can’t focus. It’s okay to take a day and not write, I have to teach myself that some days because I want to write at least 1,000 words a day. Some days that 1,000 comes through my fingers in like half an hour sometimes it takes all day and I still don’t hit it. It’s okay to let your creativity recharge. 

6. Read! 

I have not read enough books this year and I know that. I love reading and I always have reading as a kid inspired me to write little things, fan fictions and my first attempts at long form fiction as a teenager, and novels in college and beyond. Find a genre that you enjoy and run with it, I did this and read like 11 or 12 pre-World War I British period fictions and I have not read one since because I burned out on it even though I love that time period. I also have not written a period fiction and I don’t think I ever will. But read, it helps you as a writer. 

7. Create characters you would want to know/ don’t make them perfect

What I mean when I say this is that if you are writing something and you wouldn’t want to at least sit down and chat with the character you might hate writing them. I am talking about antagonists too, my villains I would love to sit down and have a chat with because I think it would be fascinating. Give you’re characters flaws make them more human more relatable to your readers because if they are unbelievable or static people get bored with them. I know I have put books down and never picked them back up because the characters didn’t feel real to me. 

8. Branch out

Whether that be creatively or with a community around you that supports your writing, can help you out with things you don’t know, or beta readers when you need someone to look at the word vomit you put out on a page. (I am still working on the community part.) When I say branch out creatively though what I mean is don’t just write one style, I have written books in first and third person, I want to write a choose your own adventure style in second person which is going to be complicated. Write in different genres, I have written general, fantasy, tested my hand at sci-fi, and tried out mystery because I read a lot of cozy mysteries. I have done stand alone and series, the series started out as a stand-alone series of three and now encompasses four different major groups and what will be probably seven novels when they are all completed.

9. No idea is stupid

Even if something never makes it to a book store or to the public if it’s just for you get that idea out of your head and down on paper. If it’s just for you it doesn’t have to be perfect and maybe that idea will spark another idea that is absolutely amazing. Rome wasn’t built in a day, right? 

10. Have fun with it (this one is related to no. 1)

Creative endeavors are supposed to be fun so don’t stress yourself out if something isn’t perfect, because let’s be honest perfect is impossible, messy characters can be fun as long as they are consistent. It’s okay to have stupid/ funny lines and be unapologetic about them because sometimes those are the ones that people quote for years after reading a book.

11. Don’t create statue characters (this one is related to no. 7)

Statue characters are characters to me who have almost no purpose, do not put in a character to say one line and never been seen or heard from again. Do not make your major characters static, they also qualify as statue characters, they have to grow and evolve as time goes on, you can have characters who never learn from their mistakes but do not have too many. If you are writing a character say at the beginning of college by the end they will be a different person because that’s usually how it works in real life. Don’t root them in one spot and expect everyone else in the story to support them, people get annoyed with others who learn nothing and don’t change. 

12. Don’t assume your reader knows everything/ can read minds

Sometimes explanations are necessary to get a point across or to allow someone to understand your character’s motivation. I have read books in the past where I felt like I was missing a bunch of things because things weren’t explained or they were something that I didn’t personally understand and you lose people that way. If you sit around and assume that the person reading your book knows everything that you do you might miss something and lose someone half way through, you Google so they don’t have to. 

            I think that a dozen is just about enough because it was just me rambling for almost 1500 words and that’s a lot. My tips might not work for you and they might rehash those tips of famous authors but maybe that just means a lot of authors suffer with the same issues, who knows? I am not a professional author, though I aspire to be one day, I have a goal of having a book shelf full of my work instead of just other people’s work. I might have more tips down the road because this is a post that I have been considering since last year at some point and it’s just one of those posts that I was scared to post because this is a “lifestyle” blog then I realized it’s my blog and I can put whatever I want on here because it’s what I want to put on here. 

            If you have any tips for me I am all ears! 

            Hope everyone has a great start to the week and I will see y’all on Wednesday with another post.

            -MJ 

MJ Takes on a Hobby: Painting

Hey hey, it’s MJ, 

            So a continuation of my hobbies series because why not. I’m still pretty much quarantined and that means that I am crawling up the walls like I am in The Exorcist and I am bored. Now having a hobby doesn’t have to mean you are great at something and guess what we all have different skill level and styles so if you ain’t got nothin nice to say don’t day nothin at all. We all should live by the words of Thumper, seriously the world would be a much nicer place. Back to what this post is about though, I like art I always have and I spent a lot of time in classes doodling in the margins of my notebooks because I was bore listening to someone lecture about a variety of subjects in both high school and college so I would doodle. I like painting, I am not great at it but I like it, I want to acrylic pour because that has become SO popular in the last few years and it’s really cool but like such a waste of paint in my opinion. 

            I love art, art history if I could have done it for a living I would have majored in that in college, I love studying art and looking at what the old masters did. Impressionism and Post-Impressionism are my favorites and Vincent Van Gogh is my favorite painter him and Claude Monet, it’s the brush strokes. 

            I am not going to show all of my paintings, because I am not comfortable with that but I am trying to be more open about my creative endeavors and I don’t see that as a bad thing. 

            So I have a wall of painting above my desk and the older one (top left corner) is called “Garden of Whimsey” and it was done in 2017 when I started painting again after college, I was working on my masters at the time so my life was busy and I needed an outlet. I pulled it off the wall and the command strip stayed which is a pain but it was still sticky so here’s hoping that it doesn’t fall off the wall onto my desk. The next one I did was the bottom center and it’s called, “What of the Sea” also from 2017, I don’t know my motivations for paintings they just kind of happen and for the most part most of them are just a, I pick some colors and go to town with no plan. Like “Enchantments” which is the bottom left I didn’t have a plan. “Chaos” the large one on the right was another painting like that where I just went with a palette and went to town. “Say Amen” which is the top center was just me putting the song “Say Amen (Saturday Night)” by Panic At The Disco on repeat and painting what I felt. That one was in the middle of a depressive episode at the end of March 2018 so my head was not in a good place when I was working on that one.

            My mom has a bunch of my paintings which I am not going to share but I can still tell you what they are, my mom loves owls so I painted four owls from reference pictures, I had a vision of a tree in the fall and that also hangs in her bathroom, all of my paintings are in her bathroom which is a little weird but she loves them so I don’t mind. The other one is a winter scene that I wanted to do with alcohol and sharpie for the backdrop but that didn’t work out so I painted it, in again probably 2017. 

            Two more recent projects are a forest scene I painted last year, I am bad with depth so I don’t do a lot of nature scenes because depth in works of art is just not something I have ever mastered no matter how hard I try, I need to take a painting class; maybe after the rona is gone I can. I worked on this one for at least a week because I drew out my idea first and then attempted, is it perfect, no, but do I love it anyway? Yes. 

            This other one is my latest project and my mom has a larger version of it in her bathroom because I showed it to her and she said, ‘can I have it?’ my answer was no so I painted her one of her own. I love sunsets I always have and there are a lot of Facebook painting videos that inspired me to do this one. 

            I actually forgot about this one that I am going to talk about now, I love Mardi Gras masks, they have always been just so cool to me, I have several and my grad party from high school was Mardi Gras themed, I had 35 pounds of beads it was insanity and no one took them so I was left with 35 pounds of beads! Back to this painting though, I love mixed media but I don’t experiment with it like ever so putting a little bit of mixed media in this was a lot of fun. 

            Last set, I promise. I saw this “watercolor practice” on Pinterest and liked it enough that I did my own set. I’m not great with water colors but again, it was fun and for me that’s what art is. 

            Art is fun, it’s not supposed to be this serious thing that only certain people can do, anyone can make art; art is subjective what you like the next person may hate and that’s totally okay. I like art and there is a lot of art that I don’t like visually, but I can still respect the artistry of the person who created it; the time and effort that go into any piece of art any creation that involves creativity so don’t sit around and make fun of someone’s art because you might be dousing the spark of their creative fire and no one deserves to lose that spark. 

            I will see everyone later in the week with another post, have a good rest of the week!

            -MJ

Books I Have Read So Far in 2020 Part 2

Hey hey, it’s MJ,

            So this post is a little late I am dealing with migraines and some eye issues so that meant that I have been spending a lot of time recently not being able to look at any sort of light. I am getting over it but it means that I haven’t been able to be near my laptop much and therefore my post is late, sorry.

Well here we are again with another book post. Disclaimer time, I have not read much since the end of June. I am working on reading one now but I am not going to be done with it before the end of the month. Quarantine really hit me in July where I was just tired all the time. Living with depression and anxiety during a time of quarantine isn’t fun and I just couldn’t get the motivation to just sit and read so all of these books I read in May and June because I still want to hit my goal of 40 books but as the months pass I don’t know if I will actually hit that goal this year, oops. 2020 came in like a literal wrecking ball and I swear all of my goals for this year have kind of gone out the window. I wanted to wrap up six works in progress this year, I am going to be lucky to really wrap up three and for someone who writes a lot that tells me that I have been distracted this year. 

            It’s only 8 books this time so three books shorter than my last post and that means I am only 19 into my goal of 40, it is still doable if I actually buckle down and read but I have to get the motivation to sit down and just be and I don’t have that at the moment, lots chaotic energy going on in my head at all times.

Here we go though, what other books have I read so far? Mild spoilers so proceed with caution.

The Fairest of Them All by Carolyn Turgeon: 

            This book was a gift because my best friend knows that Tangled is one of my favorite Disney movies, this book however was a lot. I did finish it because I don’t like to leave books hanging though this will be one that goes in my donate pile. I am not a huge fan of books that use incest as a plot device and this one, oh man. It weaves Snow White and Rapunzel and while it’s an interesting concept there is a lot about it that I was not a huge fan of. I love fairytales and the moment they start changing my Disney childhood memories I get uncomfortable. Grimms Fairytales are fine because those are meant to be like that but this one just, while well written had some themes I am not a huge fan of. 

The Plot is Murder by V.M. Burns:

            The whole reason I even purchased this book was that it had poodles on the cover, my family dogs have always been standard poodles but toy and mini poodles are really cute so having a book with poodles in it is right up my street. I love cozy mysteries and if I can ever find the second on in a Barnes and Noble I will read it but Barnes and Noble has a bad habit of keeping random volumes in the store and then just not having the next, I saw one that was volume one and volume four and that was all they had which is a pain when as a person who absolutely devours cozy mysteries I can’t actually read a series. This combined a few of my favorite things though, murder mystery, book shops, and dogs so I cannot be mad about any of it and this book is a book within a book which is an interesting concept to me so kudos for that. 

Rest Ye Murdered Gentlemen by Vicki Delany:

            Another cozy mystery, let me be honest hale of this list is cozy mysteries because they are all a plot formula and they are fun to read. This one was amazing from what I remember of it, I read it in May so I really need to start writing my little blurbs about them after I finish reading them but I don’t and then I suffer for it. It has an interesting cast of characters and the main character runs a Christmas shop and as someone who loves that time of year I love it so much, again if I could get the second one I would be reading it by now but sometimes that’s just too much to ask for. 

The Last Wish by Andrzej Sapkowski:

            My best friend is obsessed with The Witcher and I watched the Netflix series which was great, give it a watch if you like this kind of stuff. It was a lot of blood and stuff so caution to those who was faint of heart. It’s a book of short stories and some of them are from the first series of the Netflix series so I had a lot of familiar characters and I had to laugh at the fact that in the English translation the bards name is Dandelion because it’s amazing. It’s a good book and I have a few of the others so I plan on reading them eventually I also plan on playing the game but that will be down the road. 

Key Lime Pie Murder (Hannah Swenson #9) by Joanne Fluke:

            I read eight and nine out of order because I am an idiot and I had them backward in my bookcase. Again a cozy mystery because at this point no one should be shocked, they are easy to read. I like the Hannah Swenson mysteries and they have some of them on Hallmark as movies so that’s always fun. This one was county fair themed and I have many fond memories of our county fair in Indiana so I was able to picture it really well in my head and it was a good fast paced read overall. 

Cherry Cheesecake Murder (Hannah Swenson #8) by Joanne Fluke:

            I read them out of order but that’s okay, I’ve done it before. I liked this one and it kept me gripped from page one to when I closed it when I was finished with it. I loved the story over all with the movie intrigue and mystery that seems to befall Lake Eden like all the time. That is one unbelievable thing about cozy mysteries like 20 murders in one small town over the course of a few years. I know that is the point but it’s still less than believable. It’s fun though and I really enjoy the series. 

Annihilation by Jeff Vandermeer:

            I wanted to watch this movie so badly and then I got rid of Hulu so I have to buy it. I saw a lot of reviews for the book that said it would leave me with more questions than answers. I really enjoyed the book it’s written in such an interesting way where no character has a name only a profession and that is so interesting I have never read a book like that before and I want to read the other two. It was fascinating and it kept my attention because it kept me wondering what was going to happen next and questioning if anything I thought I knew about this novel already was real. It was amazing, weird, suspenseful, and conjured up interesting and beautiful imagery.

Only Human by Gareth Roberts: 

            Huge Doctor Who fan, I still haven’t watched the 13th Doctor because no one in my life has BBC America but I plan on watching it eventually. But this book was the Ninth Doctor and Rose and was written for the 50th anniversary so it’s not a new book. I like the novels written that could be stories on the show and come from the imaginations of writers who are fans of the show. Reading them after watching the show you can almost see it in your head though and I have read a number of Doctor Who novels, there are more that I want but it’s hard to find some of them because I was not a fan until late 2012 because at the time it was on Netflix, as was Torchwood which I also loved. If you like Doctor Who and reading these novelizations are a great companion to the show when you are missing it.

            So that’s it, all the rest of the books that I have read so far this year and I am hoping that my last post of the year I have to split because I don’t want to bombard y’all with 20 books in one post, that’s the goal people that’s the goal. Who knows what the rest of the year brings because at this point 2020 is just one to go in the bin so I guess we will see. 

            I will see all of you later in the week with a new post!

            -MJ

2020 Bullet Journal Update 2

Hey hey, it’s MJ,

            So truth time, I am done with my 2020 bullet journal because I made a promise to myself this year that I would bullet journal the whole year not skip a single month and I didn’t so I am really proud of myself for that one. Quarantine really did allow me to spend some time on creative pursuits and that’s about the only upside to it.  I also have all of my “base pages” done for next year so all of my month things all I have to do next year is the pages at the front, the covers, the mood tracker, and the miscellaneous pages at the end of every month. So I really am going for it with this bullet journaling thing; only took three years to do every month, good job MJ. 

            So let’s review my last four months May, June, July, and August. My art is still not all that great but I am trying and at the moment that’s all that matters because practice does make perfect and that’s all I can ask for at the moment. 

            This post will probably look different than my original bullet journal update this year because I want to organize my thoughts differently in this one.

May Theme: 

Like last year was Star Wars themed because May the Force Be With You is just fitting for May. I am not going to show my mood tracker because it’s all very fanciful lightsabers and I don’t want to deal with the inaccuracy of colors on here. 

Cover: It is a much more expanded version of last year and I found a cute porg drawing on Pinterest because I love the porgs and I wanted them in my bullet journal again this year. The Falcon is a little less detailed than last year but I have been doing more with my covers this year so having nods to the new trilogy and the original trilogy on this page was great. The Death Star up in the corner was a lot of fun to draw though it’s not perfect. 

Movie Checklist: I haven’t seen all of the Star Wars movies I am missing Episode III and the the stand alone films which I want to watch but it’s just sitting down and watching them when you know all of the spoilers because of the internet but I also haven’t see The Mandalorian but The Child had to be a part of my bullet journal and I was really proud of how it turned out after again a tutorial off Pinterest 

June Theme:

            I am a child of the 90’s so I remember the original Pokémon and how big of a deal it was when it came out; I still have my Pokémon cards but because of that Pokémon has been a part of my life for most of my life, it came out here in what the late nineties so I was in my very early elementary school years at that point. 

Cover: Eevee is my favorite Pokémon and I know how cliché that is  but it is, my buddy on Pokémon Go is an Eevee named Monet and I love him. So the Eevee-lutions became my cover and I had to draw about half of them twice because I put the originals on the wrong page like an idiot but it gave me a lot of practice drawing them. 

Mood Tracker: Poké Balls and I feel like that’s just an obvious choice and I was going to pattern them like all the Poké Balls but I figured just the standard would do best here. 

Final Page: I watched the original series as a kid and I loved the section of “who’s that Pokémon” and I chose another favorite which is Piplup the penguin Pokémon who was also one of my buddies on Pokémon Go and I named him Orwell.

July Theme: 

           Okay so video games have always been a part of my life I just don’t play many of them and I love watching gaming content on the internet but I pretty much have had mostly Nintendo systems from the Game Boy Advanced to the Switch so July’s theme was video games. 

Cover: Lots of Nintendo and from video games I have mostly played (have not played a Kirby game but he’s so iconic) but I took a lot of time on this cover and it’s not half bad in my opinion. 

Habit Tracker Drawing: It’s Pac-Man I have played my fair share of Pac-Man and I thought it would make a cute little drawing to go with my habit trackers. 

Mood Tracker: Also have played a lot of Tetris and I really messed up on some of the pieces because I am an idiot but it worked and it was Tetris themed. 

Final Page: I have been playing a lot of Animal Crossing, there is a whole post about my Animal Crossing New Horizons fun but this at the time was my house and my outfit and I figured why not wo a full page drawing of it because I had no idea what else to do. 

August Theme:

            I grew up on Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, my fourth grade teacher read us The Hobbit and I have been a fan ever since so August was Tolkien themed and I have loved it since I came up with the concept.

Cover: Bilbo’s house in the Shire, the Lonely Mountain and a quote, I know the map on the side is not actually correct but it was most of the major locations from The Hobbit series and I really enjoyed doing this cover. 

Mood Tracker: Cartoonish Smaug because I wanted Smaug in my bullet journal but I didn’t want him to be menacing and this was something I found on the internet and again did my own rendition because there are a lot of people who are a whole heck of a lot more creative than me when it comes to art and I sometimes need help.

Final Page: Quotes from the world of Tolkien, it’s all The Hobbit and lord of The Rings because I have most of the things he wrote but I hadn’t read all of them and I could have had more quotes but I have a meme quote in there too which I kind of love. 

So there it is my second bullet journal update of the year and I cannot believe we are far enough into it that I have two updates because we are almost in month nine of the year which I am still processing March so I have no idea what day it is anymore. I cannot wait to show everyone the rest of the year in December because my late year themes are some of my faves so I am looking forward to sharing those. 

I will see y’all later in the week with another post so I hope it’s a good week!

-MJ

So What Does MJ Listen To?

Hey hey, it’s MJ, 

            I mentioned in my last post that I was switching two so here is the other one. Hopefully not as long and rambling as most of my posts but we’ll see, now won’t we? I listen to a lot of music and I always have, music has gotten me through quite a lot in my life and for that I am thankful.

            So what do I listen to? 

            When I was a kid I listened to whatever my parents did and that was in a nut shell 90’s country on our local country radio station (which I did end up interning at in college), so I will always have a soft spot for 90’s country music, I still listen to country and I don’t understand why so many people vehemently hate it. Maybe because I grew up on it and grew up more in the country than in the city I understand it; when you grow up surrounded by corn fields sometimes that happens. 

            When I was old enough to choose my own music, early 2000’s pop so the boy bands, Brittany, Christina, lots of Disney music, and still in the car with my parents; country.

            As my music tastes evolved let’s say mid 2000’s, my middle school days I shifted my music tastes because I was “rebellious”, no I wasn’t really but my mental health issues started to rear their ugly heads at about this age and I really got into “emo” music, My Chemical Romance, Fall Out Boy, Avenged Sevenfold, (even though I don’t consider them “emo” I am still putting them in here to mention) Panic! At the Disco, (yes I put the ! in even though it doesn’t exist anymore) but a lot of that kind of music. I still listen to some of the bands that I did back then and feel that nostalgia for an easier time, like middle school was fine but high school was hell for me. I was a freshman in high school in 2006, that’s right this year is my ten year high school anniversary and I have not looked back since I walked across the stage at that place. Being in high school at that time though I saw the rise of the scene kids and let’s be honest to the mid-2000’s emo kids they (in my and some of my friends opinions) looked ridiculous. 

            While I was in high school I took Japanese, I love the language and culture and at the time I was much more into manga and anime than I am now because your tastes change over time but also at that point I listened to a lot of J-Pop because it was in at the time, nothing like K-Pop is to American audiences at the moment but I enjoyed it even though I couldn’t understand all of it and I can understand less now because I stopped practicing my Japanese, one of my goals for 2021 is to pick it back up, I have all my text books and everything.

            On to college! So I worked for our campus radio station and it was indie, like really indie but that meant that I listened to a lot of indie music in college because I basically lived at the radio station junior and senior year. I also listened to a lot of pop music, you are in a sorority and you listen to a lot of Top 40’s music. 

            Throughout time I have listened to 80’s music as well, it’s not a secret that I love 80’s rock music and some of my favorite songs to jam out to are from the 80’s, I blame it on Guitar Hero in the late 2000’s but I figured it needed its own little paragraph and because of streaming services like Spotify and Pandora I can listen to more than I would have in the past. 

            So what do I listen to now? The answer to that is pretty much anything. During this pandemic and subsequent quarantine when I have been spending an inordinate amount of time in my apartment I have kind of rediscovered my love for music, so lots of 80’s pop and rock music, lots of classical because that’s what I listen to when I really want to get work done or focus, some pop but not as much as I used to because a lot of the popular music that’s out now I am not a huge fan of. 

            There are some bands though that have stood the test of time or even have come into my life more recently that I consider my favorites. Marianas Trench which I have been a fan of for over a decade and have seen in concert twice, (would see them again but they don’t come to Arkansas and I get that) Panic At the Disco, I still love Panic and I think I always will, NSP (if you know, you know), My Chemical Romance, Def Leppard, Florida Georgia Line, and so a few others that take up space on my phone so I can listen to them in the car.

            I am still one of those people who buys CD’s and I know a lot of people who haven’t bought a CD since the early 2010’s, I like the physical copies and I always have but now that CD’s have become almost a thing of the past, my computer doesn’t have a drive for one and I haven’t since like 2013, my car doesn’t even have a CD player in it which is such a weird thing for me since I grew up with cassette players in the car until CD’s took over (I know I am aging myself, I was a child of the early 90’s, 1992 babies for the win!) 

            I am always open for suggestions on songs and bands to listen to, that’s how I have found some of my faves. I know that my music tastes may not align with everyone’s and guess what? That’s totally cool that’s why music is such a cool thing; there is so much of it to enjoy that you don’t have to like the same things as your friends but there is always something for everyone. 

            Well I think that I have rambled enough because I promised not to and guess what; I did anyway. But here is me signing off and I will see everyone mid-week with another post! Have a great start to the week! 

            -MJ