June Recap // Failing At Goals, But More Reading, New Music, & A Survey For You!

Another month of 2020 is over.

I feel like this is cause for celebration. We’ve made it to the seventh month of this horrible year, and that has to count for something, right? If there’s anything that this year has taught me, it’s that each day is a gift and I need to recognize how lucky I am to have every day that I do, so with that mindset, July is definitely a celebration.

Beige Grey White Square Modern Furniture Design Blog Title (8)

In honor of the new month, I’m going to recap everything that went on this past month! June was a strange haze of watching the news, scrolling mindlessly through social media, reading library books, and spending most of my time either at home or driving around aimlessly listening to music just to get out of the house.

It was one of those months that at the end I’m torn between wondering where it went and being glad that it finally ended- and I don’t have much more to say without mentioning everything I’m about to recap (I’m great at intros), so without further ado, let’s get into the actual post!

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Even though I didn’t read as many books as I originally wanted to during June, I ended up reading 11 books. This is more than I’ve been normally reading, due to the combination of summer vacation and social distancing- so I’m happy with that, at least.

I was able to go to my library in person this month, which was so exciting! I wore a mask and there was barely anyone there- I think I’m going to go again soon because I’m almost done with the books I checked out and soon I’ll need new ones to read in July. Library curbside pick-up and that one trip inside fueled most of the books I read this month- everything I read was new to me (which is kind of rare for me).

The Lost & FoundShadow and Bone (The Shadow and Bone Trilogy, #1)House of Salt and SorrowsAmina's VoiceAll-American Muslim GirlThe Silence Between UsLucky CallerHearts, Strings, and Other Breakable ThingsUp to This PointeThe UnlikeliesDon't Date Rosa Santos

My favorites of the month were definitely Lucky CallerHouse of Salt and Sorrows, and The Unlikelies. I will for sure be including them in the next few installments of my mini reviews because I’m very eager to explain why I loved them so much!

I wasn’t exactly disappointed by anything I read in June, but I did feel like near the end of the month a lot of the books I read were lagging and I fell into multiple small slumps where I would do anything possible to avoid reading just because I didn’t feel like reading a certain book…but I pushed through and now I’m reading a book I’m interested in!

As for any other reading news, near the end of June I uncovered a lot of giftcards that I had forgotten about, and one day when I was having a bad day I ordered a ton of books online, so now I have something to look forward to. I was telling my best friend about it and her text made me laugh~

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If that isn’t the story of my life.

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How I Did on June’s Reading Goals✨

  • Read 15 books ❌
  • Read 2 classics ❌ouch
  • Start a reread of Harry Potter ❌
  • Post on bookstagram 5 times & be active there ❌✅I didn’t post much but I was active!

July’s Reading Goals✨

  • Read 15 books
  • Read (/finish) 3-4 classics
  • Reread Harry Potter
  • Post on bookstagram 10 times and stay active
  • Participate in a readathon for the first time

So, I didn’t realize how horrible I had done on my June goals until I just now looked back at them, but I definitely have much higher hopes for July! I’ve already started the month off on a good foot by posting on my instagram and starting a new book, so hopefully that translates to having a good reading month overall.

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Similar to with reading, blogging didn’t go as well as I wanted it to, but it was still an improvement to past months! I got back in the rhythm of commenting on other posts, staying caught up on my Reader, and drafting posts, and that makes me really happy.

I’m also happy because I kept track of a lot of the posts that I enjoyed (though definitely I read so many more that I loved), so here are just a few posts from June that I think are worth a read~

On a different blogging note, if you haven’t heard yet, May and Marie are hosting this year’s Annual Book Blogging Awards!!

Best Yay GIFs | Gfycat

I’m at Ross-doing-his-weird-leap levels of excitement for this! The book blogger awards are not only an amazing way to boost bloggers and spread appreciation, but I’m looking forward to discovering new bloggers through reading other’s posts and watching the love be spread. 🤍 I can’t wait to participate, and I hope you are too!

To continue on with the thought of celebrating bloggers, recently Annie and I were having a conversation about how long we’ve been reading each other’s blogs, bloggers we first followed, and the like. This got me very curious about the origins of my fellow bloggers- how did people find out about blogging, book blogging, or become a part of the community?

I’m very interested in hearing the stories of other bloggers, and I’m hoping compile a post chronicling the origin stories of different bloggers, both in an attempt to share those stories and to share appreciation for bloggers as a whole! I originally was going to email bloggers about this, but I didn’t want to make any feel pressured to participate or close it off to only bloggers I already know, so instead, if you’re interested in this, I would love if you would fill out the very brief survey below! This is not saying you have to commit to participating, but just a way for me to know if I should send you more information.

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How I Did on June’s Blogging Goals✨

  • Post at least six times ❌
  • Establish summer blogging schedule ✅I mean, I did this in my head
  • 2 tags ✅
  • Actually do those mini reviews ✅
  • Revamp my friends page ❌
  • Interact consistently ✅it always could have been better, but it was an improvement!

July’s Blogging Goals:

  • Post at least eight times
  • Interact consistently & keep track of posts I read
  • Mini reviews (part 2)
  • Participate in Book Blogger Awards
  • Comment back more
  • Fix my Friends page
  • Work on potential redesign

Since July is the only full month I have left before things with school are starting again, I want to use this time to work a lot on my blog and put out the best quality content I can while I can. I’m actually so excited for what this month holds blogging-wise!

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Life has been incredibly crazy this month. COVID-19 is still affecting everyone, protests erupted all over the world (BLM resources here), human rights have somehow become a political opinion- however much I want 2020 to be over, I hope and pray that true change can be made and that there is justice.

Somehow this month has both dragged on and flown by, with not too much notable things happening in my personal life, but a few things are~

  • IMG_5842I went back to dance for a month and we recorded our recital. I got to go back in the studio for the month of June and take classes again! We had distancing measures in place. At the end of the month, we recorded our spring concert we never got to do, and I was so grateful to both close the chapter of those dances and to see my friends again and to dance full out (my turns suffered though)!!
  • Reopening of everything, but kind of not. Things really started opening up where I am, which was exciting at first, but quickly made things really horrible with COVID-19, so that’s not good, especially with school coming up. After I finished my dance recording, I’ve been staying home as much as possible since things are taking a turn for the worse here.IMG_5841
  • The amount of snowcones I have consumed this month is bad. But when drive through snowcone places exist and it’s summer…
  • I started watching Gossip Girl! I love a good drama filled TV show, and that’s exactly what Gossip Girl is. I’m watching it with one of my friends (Netflix partywhile zooming is the perfect way to watch with people from home) and I love it so much. I aspire to be Blair (though I’m like the exact opposite of her).
  • I started bullet journaling again! After kind of abandoning my journal since I got it at the beginning of the calendar year, I started consistently using it to write down my goals, keep track of my mood, and write down my to-do lists for each day. As you can kind of hopefully see in the pictures, June’s theme was rainbow! (So far IMG_5843July’s theme is space.)
  • Music has been saving me. I’m so, so glad that Spotify exists and I can find new artists. My best friend and I made a playlist that we both add songs to that we think the other would like and listening to it keeps me sane. The songs I’ve been most obsessed with during June are: Maniac (Conan Gray), New Light (John Mayer), Sports Car (Valley), Someone You Loved (Lewis Capaldi), and I Don’t Wanna Love You Anymore (LANY). If anyone has recommendations of songs or artists to listen to, I will gladly take any because I love discovering new music!

Honestly, I have no idea what July is going to hold as far as regular life goes. I have zero commitments- my only loose plans are to read, blog, work on college applications, hopefully start another work-out program, and read my Bible. It’s both scary and somewhat freeing to have absolutely no plans!

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June was such a strange and semi-productive month? I’m glad that it’s over and that we’re now moving into the next and hopefully better month of 2020. I hope you’re all doing well, staying safe, and I’m thinking of you all! Wishing you the best July possible. xx

How was your July? What are you reading? How have you been passing the time? I’d love to talk with you in the comments.

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52 thoughts on “June Recap // Failing At Goals, But More Reading, New Music, & A Survey For You!

  1. Reading 11 books in a month is amazing! Glad you found some new favorites, I really love House of Salt and Sorrows! It’s so deliciously creepy and magic at the same time haha.

    That’s so great that you were able to go back to your library and dance studio ❤ Library curbside pickup is definitely a blessing and we really all need to be seeing our friends now don't we. It really sucks though that reopening has made COVID worse though… where I live everything is getting shut down again (not that I ever crawled out of my cave when things were open) rip rip.

    Ahh your bullet journal looks super cute! I love the rainbow theme, perfect for June ❤

    Thanks so much for mentioning my post, and I hope you have a great July 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ahh, thank you, Kay! Oh my goodness, I loved House of Salt and Sorrows so much. Who knew I need a spooky, magical story about dancing and ocean in my life so much??

      Library curbside pickup is a huge blessing for sure…yeah, the reopening’s consequences is definitely really horrible. I wish things would get shut back down here so people would be forced to stay home again but- we’ll see if they actually do that, for now I’m pretending as if everything is closed and just not leaving, haha.

      Thank you!! 💗 I hope you have an amazing July too xx

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  2. 2020 has been *such* a horrible year so far. I remember when it was the end of 2019 and we were all so excited for the new decade… Yeah, I feel like a clown now. At this point, I am genuinely doubting whether we’ll be able to make it through the whole year 😭😭 But I’m very glad that you were able to go out a little bit last month. Going out is such a foreign concept to me already :”) I don’t think I’ve stepped foot outside the house for four months, haha
    Ahh, the fact that you loved Lucky Caller is reminding me that I really need to read an Emma Mills book!!
    I’m sorry you weren’t able to meet all your June goals, but you still did so well! I’m so happy that I’m consistently seeing posts from you in my Reader again 🥺 And I hope you have a great July! (thank you so much for linking my post 😭🤍)

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    • Oh my gosh, yes, exactly! January me really had no clue.😫 I’m just grateful that we are somehow getting through it. Ahh, thank you! Eep, that’s probably a really good thing you haven’t gone anywhere of course, but I admire your ability to stay inside and not go crazy- I have to go and drive around (without getting out of the car lol) just to stay sane.😅 Ohh, I hope you love Emma Mills if you read any! I know contemporary isn’t always your favorite but her contemporaries are very high quality. Thank you again!! Wow, you’re the actual sweetest, and I appreciate that so much. Sending you all the love and well wishes for a great July! xx

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    • AHH, thank you so much, Ilsa!❤️ Yes, I’m planning to do the reading rush, I’ve never done any type of readathon before but with staying at home nonstop and all, it seems like the perfect time to try- are you doing it? Ohh, I definitely like Don’t Date Rosa Santos but I was also kind of in a slump while reading it, so I was having trouble getting through it- but overall, would recommend because I overall really liked the plot and characters. Thank you again, you too! xx

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    • Ahh, The Unlikelies is definitely a new favorite of mine, so I’m really looking forward to hearing your thoughts on it!! I ended up liking The Silence Between Us- it took me a bit to warm up to the main character, but once I did, I really enjoyed the story and reading about a Deaf character. Happy reading, Grace! xx

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  3. i’ve also been staying home, with texas cases going back up after reopening! (not that i went out regularly… i just went to protests haha) the way texas is handling this, both the govt and the people here, is making me so frustrated 😭 the “bar lives matter” protests yesterday in austin made me want to tear my hair out!!

    but moving on from that, i’m so glad you loved lucky caller and house of salt and sorrows! hosas looks like the exact type of fantasy i’d love, so i really need to pick it up ❤ and aah music has also been helping me a lot 🥺 i think i have a slightly more indie/alternative taste than you, but one of my recent faves more on the pop side is rina sawayama!!

    i hope you have a great july, olivia 💕 and thank you so much for linking to my post!

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    • I know, it’s crazy! I really hope the new order today can help change some things and that people will actually start…wearing masks and social distancing?? Now that my dance is over, I don’t have to leave my house anymore and I’m grateful for that because my counties are pretty bad with cases unfortunately. I’m praying that things get better in Texas soon😌

      Ahh, thank you!! I seriously did not expect to be as blown away by HOSAS as I was and I hope you love it if you read it- it was so, so magical and beautiful. Ooh, thank you for the rec!! I just started listening to the most popular song of hers on Spotify after reading that part of your comment, XS..I’ll give more of her music a try too.🥰

      Thank you so much!! I hope your July goes really well too. xx

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  4. Your bullet journal is so pretty! I’m in love with your spreads ❤️ 2020 has been rough on everyone, so it’s ok if you didn’t quite meet all of your goals. You still did very well, especially with your reading. I mean, 11 books is a lot!!! I don’t think I’ve ever read that much in just 30 days. Anyway, I hope July will be better for you 🙂

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  5. 2020 has been the worst ! Being only 12 I am not allowed to step outside my house and plus my neighbour I think got covid 😦 I need to agree this is cause for celebration we have made it to JULY !!! 11 books in a month is great ! I fell in a reading slump in june and reading has been really slow …I really want to read the unlikies 🙂

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    • Aww, I’m so sorry!! This year has been really difficult and I hope things get better for you soon. 💛 Thank you so much, Krisha! I’m sorry to hear you’re in a slump, but I really hope things turn around in July. I loved The Unlikelies and I hope you do too- it was so cute and fun, maybe it could help you get out of a slump?! Wishing you the best July possible xx

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  6. eleven books is an AMAZING number! and also, can we talk about how beautiful all of the titles look next to each other because of the colorful covers? i am in love! i’ll definitely be looking forward to your uni reviews, hehe.

    i LOVE the idea of compiling stories of how people got to book blogging! i am very excited to revisit my own journey by answering the survey, as my memory is quite blurry, hahah. it’s an amazing idea, olivia, thanks for doing it!

    AND YES FOR GOSSIP GIRL. i know the show is problematic, but it honestly brings me so much joy! i’ve been rewatching it while on quarantine and it’s just ugh so good. what season are you in?

    (new light by john mayer is SUCH A BOP!!!!!) i hope you have a great july – hopefully things will be able to get back to normal safely around there soon!

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    • Ahh, thank you so much, Lais!! Haha, yes, we love the accidental pretty color scheme. Contemporary covers never fail to make for an unintentional work of art when they’re all put together.

      That makes me so happy to hear, yay!🥺 Thank you so much for showing interest in it, I’m smiling right now. I can’t wait to hear your story and I will be contacting you soon! xx

      It’s so good, ahh!! Yes, very problematic, but addicting. I just started season 2, so not very far in, but I’m hoping to finish it by the end of summer…will keep you updated, haha.

      New Light is the BEST I can’t stop listening to it?!? Thank you so, so much, Lais! I hope you have a wonderful July.💛

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  7. Wait, have I ever mentioned that one of the actors in Gossip Girl went to my school? It might be one of my school’s only claims to relevant fame. I think his real name is alliterated with double c’s. Ohh, and I need to tell you the other claims to relevant fame: this guy’s sister is also married to Tony Romo and their kids are in the tiny grades. And for the two past years the football coach has been a Hall of Famer but the football team only managed to win one game in two years, so he left. Apparently a lot of the players didn’t like him, but I don’t know if that was the sore losses speaking or truth, but they use the fact that an actual NFL team he coached or something also fired him as back up.
    I filled out the form, but after pressing submit, it’s not giving a successful message so I’m nervous that it didn’t actually go through–if that’s the case, just know that’s all blamed on WordPress.

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    • I think you have before, but it means more to now that I’m watching Gossip Girl! Oh my gosh, that’s so, so cool. I think it’s Chace Crawford? I just looked up the main cast to see who “CC” could be and he was from Texas, and he’s one of the main characters. Whoaa, the fact that not only he is a famous heartthrob but his sister married Tony Romo?? Annie, your school has way more claims to fames than mine does. The only claim to…just kidding, I thought Alex from Target might have gone to my school but I just googled it and he didn’t, lol, we have no claims to fame. That’s so interesting about the football coach, too! I wonder why he was fired from the NFL.
      Haha, don’t worry! I blame it on WordPress too.

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      • Okay yes it’s Chace Crawford and I really do need to learn his name so I don’t vaguely describe him as one of the main characters whose initials are CC. Um, I know??? Like something just happened in that family. HAHA, ahhh your ellipsis comment made me laugh so hard. Is Alex from Target from Texas?? Hm, and I wonder what he’s doing now. Okay, but have you seen Lucy’s school’s claim to fame? Their hallways are so congested that a picture of it not only went Reddit famous, but also got featured in one of Pewdiepie’s videos. I don’t know, some guys said it was because he was a good player, not a good coach, but they might’ve just been salty.

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        • HAHA, that’s funny. Also, please tell me why I just Googled how to pronounce “Chace” only to realize it is just a fancier spelling of “Chase.” Haha, yes, Alex from Target is from Texas! Just not my school like I thought, darn, he’s a claim-to-fame-crusher. Oh yes, I did see that! That’s crazy. I can’t say my school hallways are much better than that, but we definitely are not famous on Reddit and featured in Pewdiepie- wow, that’s so cool. Mm, I can see why the players would be salty, but who knows, maybe they speak the truth.

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          • HAHAH that made me laugh! Wow, I can’t believe I did not realize that when the whole phenomenon happened. OH you know what sounds like a YA contemporary book? If a girl took a picture of a guy and got him to go viral, and then they actually ended up together. Ahaha, claim-to-fame-crusher! Yes, I tilt towards believing the players too, especially because my history teacher was an assistant coach and he didn’t seem enthusiastic about the coach’s style either.

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  8. Oooh, I’m so curious to hear what you thought about so many of the books that you read! Most specifically, The Lost and Found, All-American Muslim Girl, The Silence Between Us, and Up to This Pointe. I feel like not a lot of people have talked about those 4 books, and my opinions varied for this group, so I’d love to know what you thought of each of these! (Although if you’re already planning on reviewing them, don’t feel pressured to tell me all your thoughts. But if not, I’d love to hear your opinions on each of these books!)

    I’m also super impressed that you managed to read 11 books! I feel like that deserves at least a half check for getting so close!

    Also, I ended up acquiring 14 books in June so I 100% understand buying books to make your day better! I still have one more on the way because it was on back-order and I can’t wait for my last book buying binge package to arrive!

    As for what I’ve been doing (besides for buying books) I honestly spent most of my days in June finding new blogs and doing some much overdue blog hopping! I also worked on some puzzles while either listening to music or an audiobook! Spotify is my one true love for suggesting different songs for me after I get sick of the 10 songs I’ve been listening to on repeat! In our blogoversary Q&A I talked a bit about what I’ve been listening to, so I’ll mention some other songs here that way you get double the recommendations! I really like Forever Young by John De Sohn and LIAMOO, Temporary Bliss by The Cab, Little Talks by Of Monsters and Men, and Genetics by Meghan Trainor. Basically all of these songs were curated somehow by Spotify for me to listen to, but I hope you enjoy them as well!

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    • Ahh, thank you!! I want to include a few of these in mini reviews, but for a brief overview of my thoughts…I thought The Lost and Found was such a beautiful magical realism that was very quietly powerful. For both Up to This Pointe and All-American Girl, I enjoyed both of them, but didn’t feel super into the plot or like I really knew the characters? I really enjoyed the parts about ballet in Up to This Pointe, but as a dancer, at times the character’s struggles with dance were almost too close to home. And for The Silence Between Us, I really liked reading about a Deaf main character, as well as the MC’s development throughout the novel (I started off not liking her but that mostly changed), but again just wasn’t feeling it with all the characters. Overall, though, I still would not *not* recommend any of these, if that makes sense.

      Aww, thanks, haha! I appreciate the half check sentiment. 🥰

      Yay, that’s so exciting! Haha, mine have been arriving all this past week and it’s so exciting to get a package and see another book. I hope yours have been giving you the same excitement!

      That sounds really nice! I’m so glad you’re getting the chance to spend some time blog hopping, relaxing with puzzles and books, and listening to music.❤️ Thank you so much for all the recommendations, you’re so kind!! I haven’t listened to any of them but I will do so now. Thank you again, this comment is seriously the best! xx

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  9. I can’t believe my June flew by so fast, and that makes me sad because it means my summer is just about halfway over already :,( You got so much reading done in June; that’s awesome!! Happy that you finally have a free month, I hope you can use all that time just the way you like ❤

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    • I’m in the same boat! Well, part of me is sad about summer leaving, but I’m also eager for hopefully somewhat of a more normal fall. Ahh, thank you so much, Macey!! So far I’ve been doing a lot of reading. I hope your July is going well! xx💛

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  10. Ahh I’m glad you got to read so much this month, that’s so great! I’m even happier to see Rosa Santos here and hope you ended up loving it, I really enjoyed it .💛
    Thank you so, so much for sharing my post and for talking about the awards as well! I look forward to seeing everyone nominating their favorites and spreading some blogging love. Thank you ❤
    I hope July will be good to you, sending you lots of love!

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    • Aww, thank you!❤️ Oh, I did like Rosa Santos a lot- unfortunately I was in a bit of a slump when I read it, so I didn’t enjoy it quite as much as I wanted to, but it still was a really great read overall.
      Of course! I really, really appreciate everything you and May are doing with the awards and I very much am looking forward to honoring bloggers in my post soon.🥰 I really appreciate all your kind words, and I hope your July has been going well so far!

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  11. i’m happy you enjoyed lucky caller, and your friend’s text is so true haha. also, don’t beat yourself up on not completing your goals, it’s totally fine to take a break!! you were still able to read many books 💖

    i completely agree with you on how things are reopening – i think people are starting to not take quarantine seriously enough where i am, and it’s so frustrating! ahh your bullet journal is beautiful, and i love conan gray and lewis capaldi as well. 😊

    thank you so much for sharing my post, i hope you have a wonderful july!! ❤❤

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    • Ahh, thank you!! Aww, that’s so sweet of you to say- truly, thank you so much.💛

      Same where I am! It’s definitely frustrating to see, especially since wearing a mask and social distancing is so simple…but to get off my soapbox, haha, I hope things look up everywhere this month. Thank you so much!! Lewis Capaldi and Conan Gray songs just hit differently. What are your favorites?

      Of course, I love reading all your posts! Thank you again, and I hope your July has been amazing so far.💖xx

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  12. Hi Olivia! I’m so glad I stumbled across your blog – I’m absolutely in love! Congrats on reading eleven books and everything you accomplished this past month :)) As a fellow dancer, Up to This Pointe caught my attention real quick haha. Your bullet journal is absolutely goals, the spreads look so pretty! I’ve been listening to so much music too – Jeremy Zucker’s songs has been getting me through these past few months. I’d recommend “always, i’ll care” or “orchid” 🙂 Someone You Loved is such a beautiful song, good for improv too *silently chuckles*

    Hope you are doing well, and wishing you the best for July ❤

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    • Hi, Aria!! Aww, this comment made so smile so much, thank you.💗 I really appreciate all your kind words and this comment! Ahh, Up to This Pointe was so interesting to read from a dancer’s perspective, and despite some parts hitting too close to home, it was surprisingly accurate and I overall enjoyed it. Ahh, thank you, and thank you for the recommendations! I haven’t heard of Jeremy Zucker but after reading this comment I’ll definitely look into him.☺️ Oh my gosh, yes, improving to Someone You Loved sounds like an emotional experience to say the least.

      Thank you again!! I hope you also have a wonderful July. xx

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  13. Omg dying at that retail therapy text AHHH TRUE STORY!!!

    I’ve been loving music too!! I love doing dance parties hehe. I’ve been playing Ungodly Hour by Chloe x Halle and also rediscovered Hayley Kiyoko. As well as Conan Gray… OBSESSED OBSESSED OBSESSED with him!! Literally adore all his music.

    I’ve been wanting to read Don’t Date Rosa Santos for the longest time ahh

    Yay for dancing!!

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  14. Hey, Olivia! I hope you’re having a great July so far. 😊 I’ve mostly been doing the same things as you – staying at home and wondering where the time has gone, haha. I’m so glad you were able to read 11 books last month, that’s a great amount! And I’m happy you got to visit your library!

    I’m so glad you liked House of Salt and Sorrows – it’s one of my favorite books of the year so far! I haven’t read much during quarantine, so I personally feel like I’m behind on my goals as well. I’m kind of in a reading slump, but mostly because I’m doing other things, and reading isn’t really a priority for me right now.

    Thank you so much for including my post! 💕 I’m glad you enjoyed reading it! And good luck with your goals for this month (and especially college applications!), I believe in you!

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    • Hi, Xandra! Thank you so much- I hope you’re also having a wonderful month.💛Ahh, yes, that has certainly been me all this month, just sort of sitting around reading and trying my best to somewhat be productive?? Ahh, thank you. xx

      It’s one of my favorites as well! I couldn’t believe how magical and atmospheric it ended up being. I completely understand having other priorities- sometimes reading has to be set aside for a bit, and I’m sure you’re doing amazing at everything else you’ve got going on!!

      Of course, I always love your posts so, so much. Thank you again, this comment is so kind and I really appreciate it!🥰

      Like

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