If we were having tea… // 21st June 2020

It’s been a while since we last caught up over a hot drink!

In fact, it’s been over a month. I’m pretty sure I wanted to post a life update somewhere in the middle but was swamped with work. These posts actually take some time to write, even though they’re easy to.

Anyway, grab your choice of drink and let’s catch up.

a pair of hands cradling hot tea

If we were having tea… the first thing I’d update you on is my college. I’m officially done with all assignments and quizzes!!! They were my last ever ones for COLLEGE. Oh my gosh.

I think I’m actually realizing that fact only now. When the assignments were going on, my only focus was getting them done in time while managing my internship and other things. But now that I say it.. I want to cry. In relief, of course.

There will be no more assignments or quizzes. I’m even done with one of my subjects for which I had to present online. I do have three theory subjects this semester for which we’d generally have written finals. But I’m unsure whether that will happen this time. If it does, who knows when.

Going by the timeline decided before COVID-19 changed everything, I would have been DONE with my finals and graduation ceremony and farewell and… oh wow.

I remember, back in February when I learnt about the expected dates for finals, my only concern was having finals right before/after the Lauv concert which I booked tickets for with my friends. The concert was supposed to be on June 15th and it would have been my first ever concert.

animated cat sighing gif.

If we were having tea… you would witness me go off on an intense nostalgic monologue for the first time ever. I am not a nostalgic person. I might become sad but I move on quickly.

But in the past few months, I’ve just been pushing through with the internship and college work. Now that I’m done, and I think about all the missed opportunities for making memories.. I actually want to cry.

Oof. New topic.

If we were having tea… I’d tell you that my friends and I started watching another show together! It’s actually been a while since I watched anything with friends over stream or Netflix Party.

A bunch of us are now watching Modern Family together, which I’ve actually seen before. I watched almost all the seasons. A friend and I have been hyping it up to our friends who always rewatch Friends and How I Met Your Mother like broken records, and we have finally convinced a couple of them to try Modern Family.

We only started about three days back so it’s still new. But I’m really enjoying it, especially since I had watched season 1 a LONG time back. Looking at these (young!) characters is familiar but still new because I don’t remember everything.

If we were having tea… I’d talk about how I finally broke and ordered books yesterday. It was something I’d been contemplating for a while because I was worried if it would be safe. Yeah we get groceries ordered but we wash them thoroughly, we can’t do that with books.

Yes I know that I still have a few (or more) unread paperbacks on my shelves. But there are a couple books that I really want to read soon. One of them I’ll actually be buddy reading with a friend next month. So I finally made the call and got them delivered from my regular bookstore (I’m not giving any more money to Amazon unless I can’t help it. Support local bookstores & businesses during this time!)

bookworm tangled gif

If we were having tea… it would be a very welcome change. My days are quite boring now. Almost everything is in my control. My interest and motivation to blog is also slightly waning, even though I have a ton to share and talk about. I’m hardly in the mood to open my laptop and write a blog post.

My days consist of internship work, read, eat, sleep, repeat. Blog sometimes. There will be a few video calls here and there but not many. And that’s it. How boring. I want to start a new activity but I’m not sure what.

The conversations I have with my friends almost solely revolve around news because there is nothing else that changes. All of us are bored, none of us have new things to say or talk about other than news.

Did you know a meteorite-like object fell from the sky in Rajasthan? Did you know about the incident where a COVID patient died because the family unplugged the ventilator to plug in the air cooler, and the doctor got attacked? Let’s not even talk about Sushanth Singh Rajput and nepotism in Bollywood. And this is not considering all the international news.

I may not know about the exact number of COVID-19 cases, but I do know random bits of information. Mostly because my friends and I just share screenshots and news articles in our Whatsapp group. That’s all we talk about.

"we're doing what we can" gif

If we were having tea… on a slightly unrelated note, I’m currently having a conversation with a friend and we’re talking about alcohol and drinking. I mentioned that he’s 21. Which triggered me to think about whether I can legally drink and for FIVE WHOLE SECONDS I had a crisis trying to remember my age. I forgot whether I’m 20 or 21.

What is happening to me. (I’m 21. I’m legally allowed to drink. But I haven’t yet for some reason. Need to rectify that.) This staying at home always thing has officially fried my brain. What a dumb moment to have.

If we were having tea… I WISH IT WERE IN A CAFE. OUTSIDE. WITH THE CAFE HUM AROUND. I miss seeing something that is not these same walls.

But you know what, knowing me, I’d probably get tired of the outside world in two days. And would want to go back to staying at home.

No actually I just miss my tribe. If they could at least visit me at home, I’d be fine. That’s all I want. To be in the same room as my friends. We don’t even have to talk.

Simpsons "and now my only friend is the bottle" gif

People who are staying with friends or significant others really won.


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Who are you staying with? Have you started going out and about? If we were having tea, what would you tell me?

May Bullet Journal Setup

Hey everyone!

How is it month 5/12 already? My brain is not ready to accept that I have to write dates with 05 in the month area. March and April pretty much did not exist.

My bullet journal is not used so much anymore since I’m staying at home with no events. Mostly I use it to keep track of assignments and blog work. My habit tracker page is the most used. But my dailies have highly reduced.

But I don’t want to stop using my bullet journal because it feels like giving up on normalcy and routine. So I’m using it as much as I can, especially through the trackers. Lately, I’ve taken to doodling instead of making daily to-do lists.

page 1 with the month's dates and events. page 2 with the habit tracker.

Since I had time on my hands and felt like doing an elaborate and filled spread, this is what I came up with. I channeled my January setup, added those boxes in the bottom for decoration since I had space, and viola! It became a cute spread. I love it.

page 3 with washi tape, stickers and leaf doodles. page 4 with blog schedule planner.

Due to the “habit” in the previous spread, the ink showed quite a bit in the next page. I had to hide it with washi tape and the only thick washi tape I had was this metallic one. It’s actually quite cool.

But once I used it, I was clueless on what to do with the page since I’ve never worked with this washi tape before. Eventually after considering many different things, I added stickers and completed the page with doodles.

The doodles were very satisfying to do and I listened to an audiobook while doing them. Win-win.

I know that the two spreads look like they’re from two very different themes. But I seem incapable of maintaining the same theme past one spread.

And that’s it for my May setup! I’m quite happy with how it turned out.

You might notice that I didn’t do an expense tracker. It’s because I’m barely spending. My March expense tracker of two pages STILL has enough space to hold another slow month. So I’m going to continue using that instead of wasting a page.

As an update, I posted a casual flip-through of my 2020 bullet journal so far on Instagram which you can see below!


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Can you believe that we’re already in May? Are things looking better where you stay?

if we were having tea header image

if we were having tea… // 2nd May 2020

It’s been a while since I last posted a life update… and I have quite a bit to update on.

At least, that’s what it felt like in the last few weeks. Every time I want to post a life update, I don’t get the time to sit and write a long post. I end up doing a book review or something which is easier to write.

But it’s a long weekend this time, and you can bet that I have things to share.

So get a hot cup of your favourite drink and settle in to chat with me for a bit.

P. S. I’m just typing as I think and I’m not proof-reading in order to not edit my thoughts. So if there are typos or things that don’t make sense.. go with it lol.

a steaming cup of tea gif

If we were having tea… the first thing I’d update you on is my blog’s status. I FINALLY got a custom domain! Getting a custom domain to take my blog a little further has been in my mind for at least two years. I started becoming more serious about it around a year back, and I researched about WordPress plans and tons of different options.

The number of options and each of them meaning different things got me confused and nervous. At this point my blog has a good SEO ranking for some of my posts, and I get most of my views from search engines. I was worried about losing my SEO ranking because it’s a huge thing for me to get views from search engines.

I hesitated because of that and pushed it away saying that I will consider it again when I start to earn. Well, I started to get a stipend in January. And I procrastinated on this decision again.

A couple days back I was randomly looking at advice websites and asked a couple questions to bloggers on Twitter. It led me down to the same rabbit hole again. Eventually, I got tired of it and decided to push it away. AGAIN.

But at around 11pm I realized that if I don’t finally do something, I will never do anything. And I did the thing with the least amount of risk. I signed up for a Personal plan on WordPress which gives me a custom domain.

My blog is no more residing at thewordyhabitat.wordpress.com! It’s thewordyhabitat.in now. I have to say, I’m so excited about a smaller URL. It looks much better.

And now that I’ve done this, I won’t be going back. So it’s only forward from now on. I’m considering getting a host, migrating, and will be figuring out my next steps soon. Not immediately, but I feel like I am on that path now. That’s better than nothing.

If we were having tea…I’d talk about how I miss conversations and voices. I’m not a very talkative person in real life but I do like listening to conversation. No clue why but I like listening to people to speak without having to contribute myself. I do speak as well, but just listening in feels good too.

So during this lockdown (which has now extended until May 17th at least), that’s what I’ve been missing about people the most. Conversations. Listening to people speak.

I do have video calls with my friends sometimes. There was a video call with my book club last week and a voice call with some of my friends two days back. My best friends just called me and now I’m talking with them as I’m writing this. It’s not the same but it helps.

Not going to lie, I crave some small connection at all times. Like listening to music with people while doing our own things. I don’t want to talk but I want to stay connected with people, you know?

If we were having tea… I’d talk about how I’m losing touch with people. You know how you expect that you will lose touch with some people after college personally, but not in a group setting? Just individual relationships? It’s happening already and I’m not sure how to feel about it. There are friends I haven’t spoken to in two months and have no clue about.

I’m not big on personal texts. I text about two people casually, that’s it. So group conversations are when I actually find out things and talk to people. Without that.. I don’t know. I miss group conversations where everyone’s present. That’s all.

If we were having tea… I’d vent a little. It’s quite expected that our senior year events and activities would get cancelled. I expected it. But it’s really hitting me only now and I’m sad. I wanted a farewell, a graduation. I don’t know if we’ll have them now.

As far as I know, the university is planning on keeping our exams as soon as possible and finishing with the finals within a week (since we have only 3 theory subjects). The other 3 which don’t have written exams will be evaluated later. The point is to get it all done quick so we can start our jobs and further studies on time.

We literally did not have a final semester. It’s basically over at this point. Even on the online classes, almost all the subjects are done teaching. I’m not someone who is nostalgic a lot but.. that has been my mood for the last few days.

If we were having tea… you’d find out that I’m finally missing outside food! I don’t crave outside food a lot, especially since my gluten free diet time. I just.. don’t care about junk food like all of my friends anymore. I don’t miss pizza or burgers or ice cream. Anything.

But a few days back I saw a poster of tacos and just ?? missed tacos ??? I don’t even LIKE tacos! It didn’t last long, though. And now I’m back to being indifferent about junk food.

If we were having tea… I’d talk about how managing college AND work is not happening. I have classes from 9am to 12pm Thursday to Saturday and my work starts at 11am during the week. So for two days every week, I have to juggle between the two.

So what happens is that on Thursdays and Fridays, I spend a lot of time looking at screens. And for one hour on both days, I have two laptops open. One where the class is going on and one on which I’m working. I hate this, it’s not productive. I don’t even listen to the classes half the time because I have to go bath or eat breakfast.

The classes are not useful, especially when many topics are ones we’ve studied before in previous semesters. What’s the point in classes? I don’t want to attend them but they’re counted towards attendance??

And there is no concession for students doing internships like before lockdown. We had concession before since we can’t be in two places at once but now since we’re at home and can do both, we have to attend classes.

Yes I’m ranting. I need to rant. Bear with me.

If we were having tea… I’d talk about how I’m losing sense of time. Every day kind of feels the same. The only difference between weekday and weekend is whether I’m working and have classes or not.

Sometimes it feels like time is going slow and other times days pass before I notice. I’m barely keeping up with posting here as it is. Am I the only one feeling this way?

If we were having tea… I’d say that I’m currently watching Orphan Black season 4 with a friend. Back when I watched the show for the first time, season 5 was still airing so I stopped after 3 to concentrate on school and thought I’ll watch once the show is done. But I never got back to it.

The show keeps giving twists lol. I’m honestly watching it because I want to know how it ends. It’s not that great anymore.

If we were having tea… I wouldn’t say much more and would listen to you. I thought I had a lot to say and at the moment maybe it felt like things I wanted to share, but I don’t remember many of those things anymore. It’s all blurring together and feel inconsequential.

Honestly every time I want to connect with people I read blogs. I read the blogs I follow and find new ones on Twitter. Reading books and blogs keep me afloat nowadays.


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If we were having tea, what would you tell me?

Songs on repeat header

Songs On Repeat // April 2020 edition

Hey everyone!

Normally time goes really fast. But now it’s fast and slow at the same time. This is so weird. I haven’t stepped out of my house in 6 weeks and I am losing sense of time and routine.

But music is always there, and I had a few favourites this month.

Say So (Japanese Version) by Rainych

I was never a fan of the original song Say So by Doja Cat. A lot of people were obsessed with and it was some tiktok trend as well, but I just did not care for it.

Then one day I saw this tweet going viral that Doja Cat reacted to Rainych’s Japanese version of Say So. I was intrigued so I listened to it and I loved it immediately. It’s such a bop.

Start by Gaho

I was obsessed with this song from the first time I heard it in Itaewon Class. You just can’t help loving it. It’s such a good song, and it always manages to pump some energy into me.

Stone Block by Ha Hyun Woo

Of course my Itaewon Class favourites aren’t going to stop with one song. Stone Block is another really good song but this one is all about grit and determination. Love it.

Someday, The Boy by Kim Feel

This song has such a raw feel to it. The singer’s voice straining in the high notes just.. hits me with feels. I want to sit in a corner and cry and let everything out. It’s like a hug for when you’re sad. It’s the song that I’m currently listening to on repeat.


And that’s it for this month. I know it’s less but I spent a lot of time going back to old favourites looking for comfort. Songs like Castle on the Hill by Ed Sheeran, Auditory Hallucinations by Jang Jae In, and Stay With Me by Chanyeol and Punch were my go-tos.

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What songs were you obsessed with this month? Recommend me some in the comments!

How I’m coping in lockdown

Hey everyone!

I’ve seen many bloggers do this kind of post where they just talk about how they’re doing and what their routine/life looks like in self-isolation/lockdown and I wanted to do my version as well.

This post was actually supposed to go up yesterday but I took a complete day off by not opening my laptops. After the week I’ve had, I really needed a break. All the tasks on my to-do list have been moved forward to today.

Routine

In my last life update, I mentioned that I was trying to set a routine. Well, it finally worked out. I now have some kind of routine for weekdays.

By routine, I really mean just a morning routine. After waking up and having some green leaf juice that my mum is forcing me to drink every day, I work out for a little to get my energy up. I’m not working out for weight loss or fitness but just to get my energy going and become fully awake.

Then I wash up and get dressed. Now, getting dressed has really helped me switch my mind from home-mode to work-mode. A lot of people are happy that they can work in pajamas but that doesn’t work for me. I dress up almost like I would if I were going out.

Changing back into home clothes at the end of the day makes the switch into chill-mode. I know that keeping home-life and work-life separate is important. Having a proper off-time is important. So the clothes really made a difference.

Before starting to work for my internship, I had college online classes this past week. So 10am to 11am I have a class and I start working at 11. This was Monday to Saturday this week. But from next week they’re making it 9am to noon thrice a week which is going to be hard.

First of all, three hours of class followed by 8-9 hours of work is not possible by me. That too with only a lunch break. Also, it adds a lot of screen time which is bad for my eyes.

After logging off work, I usually take at least an hour off to spend time with mum while having a drink or listen to audiobooks. I have a tendency to forget I have a phone during the day so I also catch up on texts and conversations at night.

And then, I just read or watch something. I try to blog but it’s not working out because I can’t look at the laptop screen any longer.

Screen time

My eyes are normally weak as it is. I wear glasses when using my laptop or looking at TV to help with the strain. I wear glasses all day long because even too much sunlight causes my eyes to become red.

8-9 hours for work is about as much as my eyes can take. By adding on an extra hour this past week for classes, my eyes need dedicated break/recovery time. For three out of four work days this week (Friday i.e. yesterday for me was a holiday for Good Friday) I’ve ended my workday with red eyes.

Red eyes means that I need to completely rest my eyes for at least an hour so they can take the strain again the next day. This is the one thing that I’m really struggling with.

Everything that did not require using a screen before requires it now. I am very conscious about the strain my eyes are taking. I find myself rubbing my eyes or closing them for a few minutes, just to rest them, multiple times a day. Whenever I can, I spend meetings walking around instead of looking at the screen. But only so much can be done.

Evenings are spent reading, listening to audiobooks, or doing anything else that will have me not looking at screens.

Internship

This Thursday was the first time that I felt like I was fully productive since work from home started. It has taken me this long to adjust to working from home and having meetings online. Also to figure out how to really communicate and what works best.

I’m a productivity-oriented person. I’ve mentioned this many times on the blog. It’s a good day when I’ve been productive and got a bunch of things done. Unless I specifically decide to take a day off for rest, I like to get at least a few things done. The tasks can be anything, but I need to do something.

In fact, it keeps me energized. After a productive day, I log off with energy to do non-work things like blog or chores.

So working an entire day for the internship and being productive makes me feel good. This week was the first time during work from home that I was satisfied when logging off work.

One thing I’m really glad about is having a partner who works like me. She is also productivity-oriented and we’ve worked well together so far. That really helps.

College

It feels like we’re still in an adjustment period and we’re figuring things out. The college authorities seem to have made a decision recently which translated into an email with upcoming plans that we received yesterday.

Obviously, there are holes in the plan and things that can be done better, but everyone’s trying. When the semester started, I expected to be studying on my own because of the internship which doesn’t allow me to attend most classes.

Since it’s online, and just hearing the class helps familiarize the topics, I’m trying to attend as many classes as I can. I did miss a couple classes this week because they were in the afternoon when my work is at it’s peak.

I have no idea how I’m going to manage the new plan of three classes thrice a week, like I mentioned before. No clue how that will work. Especially since the email mentioned that attendance counts towards scores.

In my opinion, that’s not good because tons of people have internet issues. Three hours of continuous class thrice a week will require quite a bit of internet data and good internet connection, which many might not have. Even I face internet issues almost everyday when I’m working.

My classmates and I are hoping to talk to the teachers and put forward concerns. Hopefully, a solution works out.

Blogging

Is NOT HAPPENING. I’m still trying to post thrice a week. Until last week, I had some sort of a schedule to post but this week it was not possible. I couldn’t bear to look at my laptop anymore and hence, blogging was out of the question. Thankfully, I had written a couple posts during the weekend, which went up in the beginning of the week.

Going forward, I’ll have to somehow blog during the weekends for the upcoming week in order to keep posting regularly. I don’t see myself blogging during the week anymore, to be honest.

Not only am I not able to blog, but I’m not able to blog hop and visit other blogs much as well. I used to see some during breakfast before work but now I have breakfast during class so… yeah. I don’t know. Have to make some changes in my routine to accommodate college classes well.

As I said before, this post was supposed to go up yesterday. I thought I could do it since yesterday was a holiday (for work, not college). But I a few hours after waking up, I knew that I needed a day off from laptops.

Reading

My reading has definitely increased during self-isolation/lockdown. I mentioned this before as well. Since my travel time has cut down and I am trying to not use screens after work, reading has been my go-to activity.

I’m even able to finish whole books in ONE sitting. For the first time this year. I’m so glad that I have unread books on my shelf and a Kindle that allow me to read a lot.

Although my reading has increased, I haven’t reverted my 2020 Goodreads reading challenge back to 150 books. I’m 15 books ahead on my current goal of a 100 books, but I think I’ll need to get ahead now to meet my goal by the end of 2020.

Things are definitely going to become more hectic once lockdown is lifted and the society starts to go back to normal. There won’t be time for reading then.

Reading more also means that I have more books to review, but blogging less means that I don’t get the time to review them! It’s a dilemma on it’s own. I’m going to have a huge backlog of reviews by the time self-isolation ends.

Watching

During the weekends I watch a bit too. Also during meal times if I can handle it.

Last weekend, I finally binge-watched High School Musical: The Musical: The Series. I’ve heard way too much about it since Disney+ came out and I’m glad it came to India so I could watch it. A friend lent me his Hotstar account so I can watch lol.

I’ve also been watching Shark Tank for a couple months now, mostly during meal times. I finally finished the three seasons on Netflix. Time to look for a new show to accompany meals.

A couple weeks back, I also rewatched Orphan Black season 1 with three of my friends on Netflix party. Going back, I see so many plot holes in the show. I also notice a ton of other things, which makes the show predictable even without me knowing the story. It was still interesting but not as much. I’m not continuing with the show anymore.

Yesterday evening I started a Kdrama called The K2. I’ve been eyeing it for a long time but held off for so long because it’s an action drama and I’m not into actions. Too much fighting which takes up plot time, in my opinion. On a whim, I decided to give it a try yesterday.

My opinion is the same on fighting scenes taking too much time of the show but the plot itself isn’t bad. I’m halfway through. Final verdict is still out.

Socializing

This is barely happening. I’m not a very social person as it is and most of my socializing came out of friends making plans.

My college friends and I did have a couple video calls but didn’t have much to talk about. We’re all having monotonous days.

I did a video call with my best friends once which was impromptu because one of them was bored lol. My girl group from school have planned for one this evening which will be the highlight of my day.

One things that has really changed is the amount I text. I generally don’t talk much as it is, but I don’t texting. I usually reply whenever I can and do have long conversations over text.

But now that I have nothing else to occupy my mind, texting really annoys me. I can text a bit, but not a lot. And I feel like I’m wasting my time by texting about things which I consider unimportant. Like shows or random topics.

It’s probably not good but I feel better now that I really cut down my texting. Whatever makes me feel good is good, right?

I do text and have conversations everyday but not very much. My notifications for all social media apps are off so.. I sometimes forget about them. I haven’t opened snaps that I’ve received in over a week.

My coping mechanism seems to be not talking a lot.

In daily life

Mum and I live around each other more than live together. It’s mainly because of me and my need for space and alone time often. Both of us can’t go out and take a break from each other, which is causing strain in our relationship.

I consciously avoid arguments with her because I know that it won’t be good since we’re stuck with only each other. Being my mum, she constantly tells me what I can do different or better which really affects me because I’m doing my best.

She can chant or sing devotional songs all day but I’m not going to do that because I don’t believe. That’s that. She has taken this lockdown as an opportunity to get me into devotion and constantly tries to make me do things.

So yeah, I’m not doing great mentally. Because every time I go to spend time with her, she will bring up something that I should do or how I’d trouble her less if I just listen to her. I know that she thinks for my own good but I have my own beliefs. I am 21. The time for listening to everything she says has gone.

Because arguments over religious activities is enough on it’s own, I simply listen to whatever she says otherwise because I don’t have the energy to argue. I’m just hanging in there, y’all.

As for groceries and food, mum goes out about once a week in the morning to nearby stores. We spend at least half an hour after she gets back just washing and everything.

Now we might not be allowed to go out as well, soon, so delivery systems will be put in place by the government. It should have been worked out before itself but better late than never.

The COVID-19 situation

I used to be quite obsessed with keeping updated on the news and reading all the information. In fact, I used to update my friends with the news. A few friends and I have a group called “updates” where we used to just send updates and talk about COVID-19. Anyone who didn’t want to could simply not join/leave. It was how we coped.

That has fizzled out in the last couple weeks. Some friends still stay updated but we don’t talk as much about it on the group. I’ve stopped seeing the news and searching “coronavirus update India” on Google. I have a friend whom I text once every few days asking for any important news.

Basically, now we’re coping by not concentrating on coronavirus updates.

It doesn’t look like it’s going down, though. Three states are in really bad condition and all we can do is hope and do our parts right.


And that’s all I have to say. I spoke a LOT. This post has 2.4k words now. There was a ton I wanted to talk and let out of my chest, clearly.

The total lockdown isn’t ending soon, and there will most likely be stricter measures put in place soon. This is the new normal, at least for some more time.

It’s definitely making completely different memories for seniors in high school and college. My friends who planned to go abroad for masters are not sure if it’s going to happen. There are a lot of uncertainties and we can only take it day-by-day at this point.

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How are you doing? How is life for you, with work or school?

if we were having tea header image

if we were having tea… // 25 March 2020

It’s been a while since I’ve spoken in a casual and chatty way, and I think it’s long overdue.

Many things have been happening in the world and I think we all could use a break from the news to just talk to each other and update on how we’re feeling/doing*.

Grab a hot cup of tea or coffee or any drink of your choice and settle down to hear some chatter from me.

*to keep things light, I will not be talking about the coronavirus situation itself. Maybe just some references, but all the talk will be about other things. We all need a break.

a steaming cup of tea gif

If we were having tea… I’d talk about my schedule nowadays which is CRAP. I sleep for 10 to 11 hours for no reason. Because I have no real time-sensitive work to do like internship or classes. I’m working on slowly resetting my schedule back to early timings, but it’s going in baby steps.

If we were having tea… you might have said “wait what?? I thought you were working from home for your internship?? That’s what you said in your last update?!” and you’d be right. I did say that, but a DAY after that my office decide to pause the internships for two weeks. We’re all scrambling to figure out our business plans and since many of us interns don’t have good internet connections where we stay, they gave us leaves. All the interns who stay away from family went back home.

My internship is paused until March 30th but we’re not sure if that will continue or whether we will resume. Let’s see.

If we were having tea… I would talk about how I need purpose to my days. Even if I’m on vacation, I like to know in advance so I’m prepared for not having work or focus on relaxing. Getting a sudden off from internship (and college classes are suspended as well) means that I’m suddenly free. I’m a planner and this was not nice to my brain and schedule. It took me a couple days of moping and sleeping too much to accept it and make a plan for the coming while.

I decided to take it as a vacation and make some progress on reading books, since I didn’t get much time to read before. I AM being a little productive everyday though because I’m a productivity-oriented person. Sleep won’t come to me unless I get something done. That something has been blogging for the most part, and reading. Now I’ve started working on my project for college as well.

rapunzel from tangled picking up books to read

If we were having tea… I’d share news about my college. Since all classes are suspended, we’ve moved online as well. But it’s a little weird for us because even normally we had only few hours of classes three days a week. And barely anyone that because most students have internship Monday to Friday.

Hence, we don’t really care about videos and lectures because it’s a foregone conclusion that we’ll be basically studying on our own from notes. We only had to worry about assignments and stuff. We haven’t even bothered to consider online classes haha.

But now we’ve been given reading material day-wise and assignments every week (before it was once two to three weeks). This is so weird. I’m going to be actually doing classwork for the first time this semester.

falling face-first onto bed

If we were having tea… You’d learn all about Twitter prom! A while back this tweet went viral which suggested having prom online since most events are cancelled in real life. We deserve some sort of celebration, yeah? Even with social distancing.

The tweet went viral with A LOT of people showing interest. A discord server was made for it called twitter prom (but on discord) and there are thousands of people on it now. Kudos to the moderators who have worked hard to properly moderate, give people roles depicting age, pronouns and sexuality.

Twitter prom is just an excuse to hang out, though. Strangers hang online on the text and/or voice channels and can make friends too. I have seen people asking out others to the twitter prom randomly haha. The actual prom happened at 4:30am (for me) today and because of the timing I wasn’t a part of it. No clue how it went.

I’ve been hanging on the channel to listen to music with others and play skribble with them sometimes. There are ALWAYS people just listening to music together I just join in whenever and have a fun time. I’ve also made some new friends! They have good taste in music, so that’s good. We have fun 🙂

Michelle from Full House dancing with excitement!

If we were having tea… I’d tell you that my Bangalore book club made a new Instagram page (follow us here!) and we’re super excited to start over. This time with better graphics and ALL the enthusiasm.

In fact, we’re currently in the middle of our first readathon! Since today is a holiday for most Indians as it’s a festival (hence no work from home as well), we thought today would be good to start small. This readathon goes on for 12 hours—10am to 10pm—and the goal is to read for SIX hours.

As I write this, we’re already almost three hours in and I HAVEN’T STARTED. This is partly because I stayed up until 3:30am reading and only woke up at 10:30am. I’ll start reading as soon as I finish this post. The book that I’ll be reading is Tatiana & Alexander by Paullina Simmons because I need a readathon to actually finish it. I left it partway a week back and haven’t returned.

If we were having tea… we would probably bond over boredom of staying at home. I’m envying the people who are quarantined with friends and their significant others because being with my mum not is not very fun. I MISS MY FRIENDS. I miss their faces. I suggested doing an online coffee/tea hangout (kind of like this post!) so let’s hope that happens. It’s not that I have much to say, but I miss hearing random things about them and I miss us all discussing things and ribbing each other.

animated cat sighing.

If we were having tea… I’d ask you to safe safe and healthy! The situation all around the world isn’t good right now and we need to keep ourselves healthy and happy. Mental health is just as important as physical health.


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What would you tell me if we were having tea (or coffee) right now?

www wednesday @ the wordy habitat, all the bookish updates, currently reading, mini book reviews, books to read next.

WWW Wednesday // 18 March 2020

HELLO Y’ALL!

I’m officially just sitting home with no work and no college for the foreseeable future. Yes I am struggling because I need a purpose to my days and suddenly having all plans cancelled is not great.

BUT.

The silver lining is that I finally have time to read! And I’ve actually been burying myself into books for the last few days. I may catch up to my original reading challenge of 150 books for 2020. Let’s see.

WWW Wednesday is a weekly blogging meme hosted by Taking On a World of Words.

The Three Ws are:

  • What are you currently reading?
  • What did you recently finish reading?
  • What do you think you’ll read next?

WHAT ARE YOU CURRENTLY READING?

I’m not reading anything currently as a paperback or ebook. I’m in-between books. I finished a book just this morning and haven’t picked up another yet.

On the audiobook front, I’m still reading Yes No Maybe So by Becky Albertalli and Aisha Saeed. As I’m not commuting, there’s no real use for an audiobook for me.

But I am planning on finishing it soon. Time to start doodling and listen to audiobooks while in quarantine.

WHAT DID YOU RECENTLY FINISH READING?

I have a proper list after so long! I read quite a bit.

I FINALLY finished The Bronze Horseman by Paullina Simmons last weekend. That huge book was a long and wild. There were a ton of elements to it. It had been on my list for a long time. I’m glad I finally got to it.

It was pretty good. While it was very long and sometimes irritating, it was quite nice. I’m looking forward to read the next book because I gotta know how it all ends.

Right after that, I needed a pick-me-up. Especially with the news nowadays, and sitting at home all day, I needed a happy book.

My book club decided to read Love Lettering by Kate Clayborn and IT WAS SO GOOD. I stayed up until 3am and read it in one sitting. It was so nice. The book was actually quite comforting.

The next book isn’t one that I finished. After seeing it around a lot, I picked up The Upside of Falling by Alex Light. I read until 17% then gave up. It wasn’t good. There wasn’t a lot of content, and the beginning was simply glossed over with a dismal plot. As it didn’t interest me at all, I gave up on it.

After that, I went down back to random romance book haha. It’s been a while since I read books with the secret-baby trope. Don’t ask me why I went back to it, I just did.

The next book that I read was Surprise Baby for Christmas by Harmony Knight. I actually did not like it. It was so sub-par. My only takeaway from it is that there exists something called a cryptic pregnancy. I never knew that existed.

The last one is Her Sicilian Baby Revelation by Michelle Smart. This one was actually not bad. I wish there was some more focus on the struggles the female lead and her son went through, though. Their tragic accident and recovery part was kind of glossed over but I would have liked more focus on that.

WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU’LL READ NEXT?

No clue. I’m just picking up random books.

Over the next few days, I am planning on reading the sequel of The Bronze Horseman called Tatiana & Alexander. It’s smaller than the first book so it should be done faster.

And I want to read some book, ANY book, from my physical shelf. Maybe Frankly in Love by David Yoon? Just, any of them haha.

And that’s it for this week’s bookish updates!

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Tell me about your bookish updates! What are you currently reading? What did you read recently?

the sunday post header

The Sunday Post // HECTIC week. Also COVID-19.

The virus has taken over the world, and also all conversations.

What did we all even talk about before? I can barely remember. I wonder what would be trending on twitter if there was no coronavirus now. Probably some tiktok video or something on US 2020 elections. Who knows.

Anyway! Let’s get onto updates. I’ll mention coronavirus-related things at the last lol.

The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Caffeinated Book Reviewer.

READING UPDATE

I didn’t get much time to read in the last week. There was just too much going on. Blogging barely made it into my schedule as well.

As a result, I finished not one book. This is new. But yes, my reading has been affected VERY BADLY.

I am currently reading though. I’m reading The Bronze Horseman by Paulina Simmons. An bookstagrammer I used to follow always recommended this book and owned over 70 editions of it, so I added it to my TBR simply because I want to know why it’s loved so much.

2020 is the year of tackling backlist books, getting to those HUGE intimidating books, and trying out reading challenges. This book fits all the three.

As the book is 900 pages long (!!!!), it feels like I’m not making much of a dent. Especially since I usually get maybe around 15 minutes to read at once. But I really sat down yesterday and made a lot of progress. Right now, I’m 41% through with the book. It’s pretty good but the jury is still mostly out.

While commuting to and from work, I managed to have a little progress on an audiobook as well. I started Yes No Maybe So by Becky Albertalli and Aisha Saeed. It’s pretty nice! I’m about half-way through and I’m enjoying it.

Oh and I reached 5 books behind my Goodreads goal of 150 books. Although I did say in my reading challenge updates post that I’ll wait until I’m 8 books behind to decide, I decided now itself. And I lowered my reading goal to a 100 books. With the other reading priorities like finishing longer books and better books, I’m not really sad about the lower count.

I’m barely ahead on the track with the goal of 100 books, and may lower my goal again sometime later in the year. But it’s okay.

WATCHING UPDATE

Yes I know what you’re thinking. You didn’t find time to read but she found time to watch? Basically you chose to watch over read.

If you thought that, you are kind of right. I did watch on multiple occasions instead of reading. BUT. In my defense, I mostly watched when I was having meals or during small breaks. Its easier to stop watching mid-way than stop reading so I chose to watch when I know I can’t read much.

And on Friday I totally binged for hours just to finish the show.

The show I watched was Crashlanding On You which is a VERY popular Kdrama. Netflix has been throwing it in my face since it released. Multiple friends loved it as well so I eventually watched it too.

It was actually really good. I’m not sure of the accuracy of the situations portrayed, but it was SO GOOD story-wise. It’s an epic love story. But what warmed my heart the most were other platonic relationships portrayed throughout the drama.

Will probably write a review soon. Let’s hope I find the time for it.

OFFICE EVENTS!

One of the reasons that the past week was hectic was because of my wonderful office. I knew before the week began that it would be hectic, and that’s the only reason I wasn’t too tired by the end. I was ready for all the events.

We had a wonderful Women’s Day celebration at office. Well, all the women got dressed up (me too! I wore a dress for the first time!*) All of us women took off from the office around 4pm to go to a nearby cafe for high tea.

It was SUPER FUN. It was a good day 🙂

me on the day of Women's Day celebration!

*yes I had to buy one for the occasion but it was high time I got one tbh. I can’t live off jeans for every occasion.

And since my office is extra, we had another event the next day. On Tuesday we had potluck. There were so many different varieties of food and I was full by the end. That was good too.

And that’s it on the office side for the week, because college took care of the rest.

COLLEGE STUFF

The problem with being a full-time intern and also have an active semester going on at college means that you end up with twice the workload and barely any time. It means filling up your spare time from one to do work for the other.

On Monday, I went to college early in the morning to give a project review and some other updates with my team. And from college, I had to go straight to office. And my home is smack in the middle of them both. Fortunately, the travel wasn’t too bad that day. I reached office in time from college.

But also, I had to go to college wearing a dress. Here, in India, we don’t wear dresses and very trendy clothes to college on normal days. Only during the fest. In fact, my college doesn’t allow shorts or sleeveless clothes usually.

So I had to wear a jacket on top of my dress and had gotten quite a few looks when I went to college. Since my dress was long and all of me was covered, no one said anything. But that was new.

And like my week started with college, it ended with college too.

We were supposed to have our first internal tests on Friday and Saturday. I have literally attended FOUR classes this semester, and those don’t even cover all the three subjects. Plus I slept through two of those classes. So upcoming tests? Not fun.

I studied a bit in the office on Thursday for the 1 test I had on Friday. Thankfully I got some free time with no work and was able to fit studying in. The test wasn’t great, but it wasn’t too bad. I did okay, I guess. We’ll see when results are out.

The two tests I was supposed to have on Saturday got cancelled. Thankfully, I did not start studying for either of them by the time we got the news. After the first exam, I sat down to finish bingeing the Kdrama. Once done, I procrastinated until we got the news lol.

Why did they get cancelled, though?

COVID-19 UPDATE

The virus has finally made it to India, and is spreading fast.

We’re still in phase-2 where only people who went abroad and their direct connections have been infected and tested positive. And we’re trying our best to not move to phase-3 which is community spreading.

The state I live in has had a few cases as well, including 1 death. The government is trying to shut the virus down STAT so we’re going all out. That means no more mass gatherings etc.

This was why my tests on Saturday got cancelled. Schools for younger kids closed down to early vacations a while back. But from Saturday, all grades of school were told to stop. Colleges have shut down as well.

Work across my city is being halted or moved to remote working, including mine starting Monday. I’m super glad because I am now paranoid about travelling in public transport. Especially since there was a positive case very close to home (like, a 5 min walk away) and my immunity is not great either.

I’m staying home, and I’m not stepping out for a while. If I can help it. And I’m working on getting my friends to stay extra cautious (read: paranoid because my paranoia means they’ll be somewhat cautious) too.

We’re working on it. Huge props to health workers and the police who are working very hard. The government and police are doing proper contact tracing etc. to keep the virus from spreading.

We’re doing our best. Fingers crossed. The world is getting scarier, and reading the news about how it’s worsening in other countries (especially Italy and Iran) is damn sad.

Hang in there, y’all! Hwaiting!

As I suddenly had a free weekend, and there’s no going out involved, I decided to tackle reading and blogging. Mostly reading, though. This is a good situation for us introverts and book nerds and Netflix bingers 🙂


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Tell me your updates! How are you holding up? How is life going for you? How is your mental health with the news and current state of the world?

Book Design Tag

Books can be SUPER PRETTY and make you cover buy.

They can also be so creative. The book designs, especially nowadays, are BRILLIANT. Designers come up with such good designs, I get heart eyes.

I found this tag at A Little Haze Book Blog and thought it would be fun to do!


1. A book you bought primarily (or completely) because of the cover.

the crown by kiera cass

The Crown by Kiera Cass. I didn’t even want to read this book because The Heir (it’s immediate prequel) was SO BAD. But. It’s so pretty. So of course I bought it.

2. A book you want to buy that has a beautiful cover

six of crows collector's edition

Since I already own the Six of Crows collector’s edition, I’m going to say Crooked Kindgom collector’s edition! These editions are way too beautiful.

3. Your favourite series design

the selection series

The Selection series by Kiera Cass. All the books look way too good. The dresses, especially.

4. Dust jacket: a book with a beautiful dust jacket, or something unexpected under the jacket

I’m not a huge hardcover follower, so I’m actually not sure. I’m going to say.. A Darker Shade of Magic collector’s edition.

5. Naked hardback: a gorgeous book with no dust jacket

Going with Six of Crows again!

6. A beautiful paperback

Midnight at the Bright Ideas Bookstore cover

Midnight at the Bright Ideas Bookstore by Matthew J. Sullivan! When I noticed it in the bookstore last year, I was struck by how beautiful it looks!

7. A nonfiction book with a lovely cover

I’m not a non-fiction person so I don’t keep track of this genre. Skipping this one!

8. A book with great endpapers

Okay I don’t pay much attention to this too. But I did see endpapers of The Shadowhunter’s Codex once and LOVED IT. So I’ll choose that.

9. Spine: a book that looks just as gorgeous spine-out as it does face-out

circe by madeline miller

Circe by Madeline Miller! It’s very catchy showing the spine on my shelf 🙂

10. Tag some friends!

YOU! Only if you want to do this too, of course.


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Love From A to Z || READ. THIS.

love from a to z by S.K. Ali

Title: Love From A to Z
Author: S.K. Ali
Genre: Contemporary
Category: Young Adult
Series info: Standalone

This book had been on my TBR* for a LONG TIME. Although I had heard really good things about it, I just was never in the mood to get it and read it. Thankfully, that changed recently.

When I got an audiobook subscription, I started going through all the book available and this caught my eye. Since 2020 so far has been reading backlist books, I thought I will tackle this as well. And that was a very good decision.

*To Be Read list

THE PLOT

Adam and Zayneb record their lives in their “marvels and oddities” journals. Although they got the idea in different ways, it’s how they see their lives.

Fate decided to push them together. They come across each other in the London airport waiting for the same flight, and then met each other again through family in Doha.

This book is a love story through and through. But it is made of so much more.

MY REVIEW

THIS. BOOK.

I shouldn’t have waited so long to read it. It’s so damn good.

Love From A to Z is the love story of Adam and Zayneb, who live in different countries and have entirely different plans for life. Their lives are very different, and yet they feel pulled towards each other.

Let’s do this in a list, because lists make everything better.

  • ZAYNEB.

Zayneb is an angry person. She becomes angry when any injustice occurs and cannot sit quietly, accepting it. Especially when it comes to her religion.

Zayneb got suspended for a week right before spring break from school because of a seemingly threatening note against her Islamophobic teacher. After her suspension, she decides that she will become a new person this spring at Doha. A quieter Zayneb. A softer Zayneb.

  • ADAM.

Adam is studying in London, but he stopped going to classes two months ago. After being diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis, the same condition which took his mom away, he has decided to LIVE. He’s on his way home from University and is faced with the decision to tell his family about MS.

  • CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT.

Both Zayneb and Adam go through leaps and bounds in this book. They learn, and they mature. They learn about themselves and find courage to be truly themselves.

Zayneb’s development was especially lovely to see. She wants to become a muter person who will cause less trouble for her parents, but this spring she learns that her experiences aren’t meant to be shushed. I loved that.

  • ISLAM.

This book teaches us so much about the religion, and the beauty of it. I’ll be honest, the only reason I know anything about Christianity is because of books. And I’m super glad that books about Islam are coming up too.

Books have the capability to teach us so much, and this one took the opportunity.

  • ZAYNEB’S AUNT.

I just love her. She’s awesome. I want her as my aunt.

  • MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS.

As Adam has MS, we learn a lot about it as well. The book has a very raw depiction of living with MS and I almost cried at one point. Although I knew the basics about the condition, this is the first time that I learnt about it in detail.

  • MARVELS AND ODDITIES.

The book is written through their journals. As Adam and Zayneb record the marvels and oddities of their lives, we see how they view life and it’s moments.

It was a new way of writing a book and it was nice. I enjoyed the format.

OVERALL

A really REALLY nice book that I totally recommend. I “read” the book through audiobook and it was well narrated so I would suggest that too. It’s the best narrated book I’ve listened to so far.

I rate this…

4/5 stars

March 2020 Bullet Journal Setup

Hey everyone!

We’re onto another month and another chance at getting our lives organized.

For the last two months, I focused on compact monthly setups and space efficiency.

Well, it finally bored me and I decided to go with more space this time.

The cover page is VERY simple. I’ve left a ton of space on the page so I can doodle as the month goes on. I haven’t decided on what to doodle, but that’s what the space is for. Who knows, it may look really good by the end.

For the month-at-a-glace, I went with a vertical divider. This is my favourite kind of layout to do because you get to draw arrows and have fun with the space. It also doesn’t restrict you to a single line per day, which is just wasting space if you don’t have many events.

The trackers on the right are the same as usual. This spread works, and I haven’t thought of a new layout just yet that doesn’t involve a lot of time to setup. Hopefully by next month, this would have changed too.

Two pages for expenses again because, like I predicted, I’d needed more space last month. I only used about 5 lines in page two but it definitely showed that one page isn’t enough anymore. Especially since I track every rupee.

And lastly, a simple blog schedule because I’m a blogger and I desperately need one.

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Did you set up a planner for March? How do you organize your schedules?

the sunday post header

The Sunday Post // a very EVENTFUL week

Last week was honestly SO LONG.

I’m spending today just trying to recover from everything haha. So many things happened that I need a whole day (or a whole blog post) to just process everything.

The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Caffeinated Book Reviewer.

Let’s jump right in!

BOOK CLUB MEET!

Last Sunday, I met up with my book club and it was SO NICE. We headed to a year-round book fair first and some of us bought books there.

After that, we had a long lunch and hangout in a new place. The food was quite nice, but the drinks were the highlight. I got cold chocolate and it was great.

And to finish up the meet, we went to our regular bookstore haunt haha. I sold back a couple of my books and got two new ones. Super excited to read them!

All-in-all, it was a really good day. I met two members for the first time ever too.

MUM’S BIRTHDAY

It was my mum’s birthday on Wednesday. Since I’m now getting a stipend from my internship, of course I had to get her a gift.*

There’s a superstition in our culture that says don’t buy anything on Tuesdays. I don’t follow it but my mum does. Hence, I went shopping on Monday after office hours. I made sure to do an earlier shift so I could go shopping for mum.

After hitting multiple stores in a shopping street near the office, I found a bag that matched all the specifications my mum would like. And I got it in a really pretty peach colour too!

I couldn’t hide the bag since it’s big so my mum noticed it the second I walked into our home. So I gave it to her then itself. She loved it. I’m happy 🙂

*We generally don’t gift on birthdays in my family. It’s always like that. We just wish and have good food if we can.

I LOST MY WALLET

Or rather, it was stolen.

I was on my way to the metro station on Friday morning when it disappeared from my bag. After reaching the station, I realized that one of my bag’s pocket zips was open and found out that my wallet was missing.

Assuming that I hadn’t closed the pocket which led to it falling, I went back searching the entire way. But I didn’t find it. I went to the police station nearby to lodge a complaint too.

Just in case, I searched the way twice more. But yeah, it was gone by then. I went back home and blocked my card which was in the wallet. And then I went to my office.

My mum and I were just thinking how could I have lost it. After figuring out logistics, we concluded that it was stolen and not lost. But yeah, I learnt to be careful about where I keep my wallet in the bag.

And in the panic about the wallet, I misplaced my scarf somewhere.

All of it took about two hours so I reached the office a couple hours late. Thankfully, I didn’t miss anything important. But yeah, it was a bad start to the day.

I did get a message in the evening that someone tried to use my card but the transaction was declined since I blocked it. And there was just a little cash and no ID cards in the wallet. Phew.

ETHNIC DAY AT COLLEGE

This was yesterday (Saturday). I wasn’t in the mood to wear ethnic so I wore a nice jumpsuit and went. I was one of the very few not wearing Indian ethnic but who cares. I looked good.

My friends and I took a ton of pictures and danced to music. After that, we went to a mall for a late lunch. And we ended the day with drinks at a nearby restropub.

The highlight of the day was definitely my drink haha. It was called Earl Grey Mixture. It was basically Earl Grey tea, Whiskey, and Ginger Ale. And I absolutely loved it. Credits to my friend Ronj for finding it in the menu and telling me.

ENDING NOTES

It’s been a cycle of office and home. I still haven’t gotten down a routine where I’m productive and that SUCKS. I need to especially start working on my project for college. Aaargh. If I could have Hermione’s time turner right now, it would be great.


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How was your week? Tell me in the comments!

Songs on repeat header

Songs on Repeat // February 2020 edition

This was a month of Taylor Swift, BTS and Kdrama OSTs.

You’ll see what I mean when I share the songs below.

Go away by Punch ft. Chanyeol (EXO)

This is a new song. It’s from the Kdrama Romantic Dr. Teacher Kim 2 which I haven’t watched. I listened to this song mainly because I LOVED another song by these two artists called Stay With Me from the Kdrama Goblin. This song did not disappoint. It’s really good.

Miss Americana & The Heartbreak Prince by Taylor Swift

I didn’t really love this song before the movie came out. After watching her movie Miss Americana, I felt like listening to all her music again. That was when this song grew on me.

Only The Young by Taylor Swift

Huge props to Taylor Swift for writing this song for the young people who were devastated during the American elections. Taylor went off against Trump in this song and tells everyone to not lose hope. Just watching how she came up with this song and wrote it on the movie was touching. The song is really good too.

ON by BTS

Yo. Y’all. I CANNOT with BTS’s newest album. I just can’t. This song is so wild and different from what I expected after their last album. But it’s a freaking HIT. Such amazing songs. This one is the title track and it’s honestly way too good.

Friends by BTS

This is a BOP. I found myself listening to this first thing in the last few mornings, and it’s made me want to dance while walking in public multiple times. It’s a happy dance song and I won’t hear otherwise.

We Are Bulletproof: The Eternal by BTS

This is another dance bop that I listen to before/after Filter. This makes me want to dance in public as well. The best part about this song are THE LYRICS. They’ve literally written a whole amazing song as an ode to their fans and ?????? MY BOYS MAKE ME CRY IS WHAT.

Moon by BTS

Of course, I HAD to mention the single by Jin. He’s my forever bias and this song is way too pure and beautiful. I love it. It’s the first song I listened to on repeat from this album.

May be by SEO

This is an old favourite from the My First First Love soundtrack. I found myself listening to the whole soundtrack during the beginning of this month. And I kept listening to it because the soundtrack is so soothing. This is one the most soothing songs I’ve heard.

Human by SEO

Another song from the My First First Love soundtrack. For a couple weeks, when I left home to go to work, I would listen to this first. It’s perfect to start the day with as it brings up your mood and makes you look forward to the day.

Baby Baby by yeop, Eun Ae

This is a FUN song. Right after Human, I’d listen to this. This will instantly bring your mood up and make you feel like skipping when walking. I always have a jump in my step when listening to this. It’s a proper fun jam song.


And that’s it for this month! I know the last three were old favourites but those where what I loved this month. You should definitely listen to them if you haven’t.

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What songs were you obsessed with in February? Recommendsome in the comments!

Axiom || Dystopian world of no emotions

Axiom by Kristofor Hellmeister book cover

Title: Axiom
Author: Kristofor Hellmeister
Genre: Science Fiction > Dystopia
Category: Young Adult
Series info: Standalone

Goodreads

I’m very into dystopia. While there are few books that I’ve really liked, I’m always looking for books in the genre that sound interesting.

Axiom was one of those. When the author reached out to me for a review in return for an advanced reader’s copy, I immediately agreed. And I looked forward to reading it as well.

The Plot

Axiom is peaceful. There is no violence and there are no variables. Even death is not a concept here.

People are known as “Figures” and have their own Roles in Axiom. Each Figure’s Role is important to the working of Axiom.

The reason this is seamlessly achieved is because only one person has control of Axiom—the Lord Protector. Only he has control and every Figure exists to serve him. In return for loyalty and obedience, he keeps Axiom peaceful and healthy.

But what happens when some Figures start having emotions? When they break out of Roles to search for purpose in their existence? And is Axiom really so perfect?

This book explores a future possibility where, to eradicate violence, emotions are removed and one person reigns with all control.

My Review

Tackling this review in the form of lists, because lists rock.

What I liked:

  • The world-building.

The first half of the book had me hooked. Through perspectives of characters in very different positions of the world, we get to see the various sides of Axiom.

I was completely engaged when reading about the setting, and how things work in this fictional place. The technology described was very interesting as well.

  • Addition of and debate on concepts like God and morals.

The way God was brought into the story and portrayed was quite clever. In the book, God is known as “Theo”. To me, that was weird in the beginning but it does make sense. No matter the name, it’s the belief that counts.

We see characters who are devout believers as well as characters who don’t even consider of such an existence. Interaction of the two was intriguing, and very similar to the current world’s stance. No matter the time, this debate will probably continue.

  • The ending.

I can’t say why without spoiling it but I appreciated how the book ended. It made me think for a few minutes, and I liked that.

What I did not like:

  • The plot didn’t seem cohesive all the time.

In fact, different characters could have been in entirely different worlds. There was very little connectivity between the different areas of the book, which was jarring during the perspective shifts.

  • Character growth.

This was the thing that got on my nerves the most. Characters would make entire revelations about themselves and/or the world around them based on very little.

In reality, the process of one’s growth is very long. But in this book it took place in the span of a night. Out of nowhere, revelations and identity changes were made. I found it hard to accept, because it happened so suddenly and is done at once.

  • I lost interest at around 50%

Until then, I was swept up in understanding the world and finding out how it worked. When the focus of the writing shifted to the characters, I wasn’t interested in the book as much.

It’s probably because of the way the characters’ journey was shown, especially a few key places about character growth. The world was great but the characters just did not interest me.

Overall

I found the book pretty okay. I didn’t enjoy the book a lot, but it wasn’t bad as well.

Recommended if you like great world-building, dystopian books.

Not recommended if characters and character growth is very important to you.

I rate this book…

2.5/5 stars

top ten tuesday header image

The Last Ten Books That Gave Me a Book Hangover

Books that leave you with book hangovers are the best books.

They affect you so much that you CANNOT MOVE ON.

And to be honest, I’ve not read many such books. I’m someone who likes to read quick and move on quick. I usually move on to other books soon. Hence, the books that give me a book hangover and grip me for days after finishing them are BRILLIANT.

My standards are pretty high lol.

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jana @ The Artsy Reader Girl to talk about books and this post’s topic is The Last Ten Books That Gave Me a Book Hangover.

Edit: I seem to have messed up my dates and picked up last week’s topic. You can see how out of it I am haha. Such a shame because this week’s topic is SO GOOD *cries*

[1] Heads You Win by Jeffrey Archer

heads you win book cover

Jeffrey Archer’s books always suck me in and give me a book hangover, although of different levels. The unique thing about this book was that it WASN’T ACTUALLY GOOD??? The ending got me so messed up and I still have a 100 questions.

After finishing the book, I thought about it and went around in circles for DAYS. Although the ending ruined the experience for me, it IS a very good book. And the author made sure I won’t forget it lol. That ending was… something.

Click here to see my full review of the book.

[2] Rafe by Rebekah Weatherspoon

Rafe book cover

Okay so you want to know why a fluffy romance book gave me a book hangover?

It’s because this book was AMAZING.

  • GOOD, STRONG, MATURE CHARACTERS.
  • A very nice plot.
  • PROPER REPRESENTATION.
  • No random nonsense or just fluff.
  • It was over all just really well written and
  • It was great to read.

I couldn’t stop thinking about the book after finishing it. I read a couple other books after it, and CAME BACK to reread this book because it wasn’t getting out of my head.

Click here to read my review.

[3] Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami

Norwegian Wood book cover

Okay this one gave me a PROPER HANGOVER.

When I finished reading it, I reread the last part then had to sit with my thoughts for quite a while. Just thinking and processing.

I spent the next one day just thinking about the entirety of this book and having questions. In order to get it all out, I found a random person on Reddit to discuss with lol. That’s how much I needed to talk about it and get it out of my system.

A brilliant book. In fact I did make notes on it for a review but never ended up writing it because my thoughts were never clear enough.

[4] Heartache duet by Jay McLean

heartache & hope book cover

Technically, I got a book hangover by the complete duology. I read books 1 and 2 continuously and hence they gave me a book hangover together.

This is another review that I eventually didn’t end up writing. My thoughts were quite clear but my emotions were ALL OVER THE PLACE. I didn’t trust myself to review clearly and hence I didn’t.

It was part of my best books of 2019 though. That should say enough.

The books deal with many themes but basically they BREAK YOUR HEART. Using realistic and heartbreaking situations, the authors weaved a romance story which is so much more. It has a happy ending but the road to it was brutal.

[5] The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo

the poet x book cover

Honestly, the fact that this is on this list shouldn’t even be a surprise.

It’s a brilliant and powerful book. The words, the writing, the story, the representation, the EMOTION—they were all hard-hitting and on-point.

Click here to read my review.

[6] Forever Right Now by Emma Scott

forever right now book cover

Another book that was mentioned in my best of 2019 list that I didn’t review. Because I didn’t know how to.

This book is romance but also involves the struggles of an ex-drug addict in recovery. It’s about second chances, and about family.

I didn’t even see this book affecting me much while reading it. But it subtly made a big impression on me. I didn’t even realize it became one of my best reads until a couple days after finishing it.

The realization came when I realized that I couldn’t stop thinking about it, and it had me going back to reread parts multiple times.

If you want a romance book recommendation that is underrated but really good, this is it.

[7] Queen of Air and Darkness by Cassandra Clare

queen of air and darkness book cover

This needs ZERO explanation.

Cassandra Clare’s The Dark Artifices trilogy was TOO DAMN GOOD and the last book gave EVERYONE a book hangover. That’s the truth. Let’s move on.

[8] The Perfect Husband by Lisa Gardner

the perfect husband book cover

This mystery + thriller book BLEW ME AWAY. I couldn’t stop talking about it to my friend.

Coincidentally, my friend actually referred to this book recently and remembered exact details because I was SO PASSIONATE about this book.

Click here to read my review.

[9] Josh & Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating by Christina Lauren

Josh & Hazel's guide to not dating book cover

Simply because this book was way too adorable. The characters were perfect, the chemistry was on-point, and the story had me HOOKED.

It also includes my #1 trope which is friends-to-lovers. Christina Lauren wrote this book so well and it’s one of my all-time best romance books. I’ve reread it SO MANY TIMES.

Click here to read my review.

[10] Radio Silence

radio silence book cover

Alice Oseman is popular for a very valid reason. And Radio Silence is her most popular book for a REASON.

I’ve never read a book like Radio Silence before. The plot, the characters, the VIBE—all of it was unique and immersive. After finishing the book, I couldn’t stop thinking about it. I had so many feelings.

Click here to read my review.

And those were the last ten books that gave me a book hangover! This week’s prompt was actually fun to do because I got to talk about awesome books lol.

Take my recommendation and go READ THESE.

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What are some books that gave you book hangovers?