Home       About Me       Review Archive

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

My Life in June: Pride, Loneliness, and Creepy Monkeys

Hihihi. So I have never done one of these monthly recaps before, but I was thinking I might start doing them as a means of keeping track of my life, blogging, and reading from month to month. As I will be returning to school in September, I will likely have less time for reading and so I thought I might introduce a more personal non-reading aspect to my blog... then again, maybe not if no one is interested. I guess this will be a trial run! Feel free to tell me if any of this is TMI. I can take it.

There are so many bloggers who do these monthly recap type features that I don't really know who to credit for my version. But it would probably be a safe bet to throw in Jamie at The Perpetual Page-Turner's name as she is frequently the originator of popular memes and features.

My Life in June: Pride, Loneliness, and Creepy Monkeys

The first big event of June for me was the 2013 Edmonton Pride Parade:

(photos from my Instagram)

This was actually my first time attending the pride parade and I have to say, it was kind of overwhelming! In a VERY good way. There were a ton of people who came out to support the LGBT community. It was such an uplifting experience. Definitely gave me the warm fuzzies!

After the excitement at the beginning of June, things quieted down for me for the rest of the month. My bf was away doing field work hunting for dinosaur fossils, so I spent a lot of time on my own and was consequently quite lonely. I know it might sound a bit pathetic to completely fall apart when your boyfriend goes away for a few weeks, but there it is. Can't change the way I feel.

And unfortunately, this really affected my reading habits! I am a total mood reader so if I am not in a good mood, I can't enjoy reading. I got so little reading done in June, it was sad! My mood also affected my blog commenting. I usually pride myself at returning comments to each and every person's blog for everyone who leaves a comment on one of my posts, but unfortch, this did not completely happen in June. And I felt SO guilty about it! Sorry guys, I hope to do better in July!

I did manage to occupy myself and keep my spirits up with a few good get togethers with family and friends, at least. My cousin from New Zealand was up visiting, which was nice because I rarely get to see her. She taught me the Maori word for "book"! There was also an Edmonton Book Bloggers meet-up this month and it's hard not to be happy surrounded by fellow book lovers! I also had a number of meaningful conversations with close friends this month and that did wonders for my psyche.

I also managed to keep myself entertained in June with a number of good TV Shows and Movies that I would highly recommend:

Sherlock is simply brilliant. It's a contemporary retelling of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes. I loooove Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman as Sherlock and Watson, respectively. Sherlock and Watson have the best bromance of all time!!

I also watched all 13 episodes of The Comeback starring Lisa Kudrow and it was pretty entertaining. But also uncomfortably awkward in that UK Version of The Office kind of way. It is a brutally honest satire on the making of sitcoms and a reality TV shows. And it's kind of brilliant.

Monster's Inc. is one of my all-time favourite movies, so I was stoked (and a little nervous) to see its prequel, Monster's University. While I don't think a new movie could ever live up to the original, I do think it was a pretty damn good effort. I really enjoyed all the inside jokes and references to the original. But I missed Boo!

I also re-watched 500 Days of Summer and somehow was able to love it even more after the second time. I love it alotalot.

Something else of significance this month: this absolute GEM was found in a thrift store:

O_O  I think my initial reaction was, "Holy shit." I don't know that I have ever seen anything creepier in my life. It appears to be a creepy-ass monkey in a bonnet and pearls. It also seems to be a salt shaker, but its pair was not in the store, alas. And it was only $3, so of course I had to have it. I figure it will make an excellent joke house warming present. But until then, I have to deal with it living in my house. I will be taking Jessica's advice and keeping it locked in my closet at all times lest it MURDERS ME IN THE NIGHT.

Blogging in June

In June, I joined Instagram finally and immediately became obsessed. You can find my profile here. Also, you can leave your username in the comments and I will look you up and give you a follow!

June was the last month of Google Reader, one of my other main obsessions. And of course, as the World's Biggest Procrastinator, I waited until the last possible moment to make the switch. But I still haven't decided which I prefer, Bloglovin' or Feedly. I will follow blogs on both platforms for a while until I make up my mind. Does anyone have a preference?

Posts in June:
Muggle Monday: New Chamber of Secrets Cover Reveal
Waiting On Wednesday: Simon & Schuster Summer 2013 Catalog
Waiting On Wednesday: Macmillan Summer 2013 Catalog
Top Ten Books At The Top Of My Summer TBR (Help Me Prioritize!)
Top Ten Books I've Read So Far In 2013
Review: Glimmer by Phoebe Kitanidis - 3.5 Stars
Review: Cinder by Marissa Meyer - 5 Stars
Review: When You Were Here by Daisy Whitney - 4 Stars
Review: The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater - 5 Stars

If anyone is interested in the results of my poll that people voted in to help me decide which books I should prioritize for my reading schedule this summer, here are the results:
1st Place: 38% said Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead
2nd Place: 31% said The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan
3rd Place (tied): 25% said City of Lost Souls by Cassandra Clare
3rd Place (tied): 25% said Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta

And finally, the best book I read in June was...:

The Scorpio Races, of course! It's hard to put into words how much I loved this one. But with the most beautiful writing, characters to love, lots of pretty horses, and a sport that is more dangerous than Quidditch (and that's saying something), it was hard not to love The Scorpio Races. Highly recommended!

Alright, that's it for me. But I would love to receive any feedback with regards to this post, my first monthly recap. Too long? Too ramble-y? Too personal? Maybe less pictures of creepy-as-f*ck monkeys next time? Let me know!


  1. I like learning more about you! That sounds creepy. (It wasn't supposed to sound creepy.) I've always liked when bloggers share more about themselves. It helps make it feel more like I'm getting book recommendations from a friend and not some random person on the internet, even though that's still sort of what it is.

    Okay, I'm not sure I'm making sense. Maybe I should have commented in the morning when I was more awake. Oh well. Got this far - might as well keep going!

    And it's not pathetic to lose it a little when your bf goes away, or if it is most of us are pathetic. My first year with my bf was long distance because we went to school in different states, and it sucked. It's hard when the person you care about is so far away, and I can totally see why that would affect your mood. I hope you're feeling better about it now. <3

    Also, I can't believe you bought that monkey. That is definitely really creepy. If I have nightmares tonight, I am totally blaming you. :D

  2. The timing of you starting a more personal one is strangely amazing! I was genuinely just about to start, although I was going to do it as a kind of separate Page in the bar across the too, separate from the reviews.

    It's normal to miss your bf, but his job/whatever he's doing it for is really cool!

    There was a Dublin Pride festival on here the other day, it was brilliant!

    It was nice to see how you got on :)

  3. I say MORE pictures of creepy monkey next time! Recap posts are some of my favorite to read. I also LOVE The Scorpio Races! AND I can't wait to go see Monsters University! :)

  4. Ummm Aylee, you're allowed to be sad about missing your boyfriend! Seriously, my bf is stationed in Arizona, and I'm living in Boston right now. I see him once every 6 weeks if I'm lucky, and I swear I have a mourning/depression period every time I leave him. It sucks! But, the fact of the matter is that you pick back up and keep going.

    Also...for the record...I'm going to have nightmares about that monkey haha

  5. Heck yes Sherlock! I love that show too :) And I agree with you - that monkey is very creepy!

  6. Holy shit is right on that monkey Aylee! I'm just going to be the one to say it I guess - it looks like a penis with a face and ears. And if that's not the stuff of nightmares, I don't know what is ;-)

    The Pride parade in Columbus was a few weeks ago but I missed it. So bummed. I've never been but I'm definitely hoping to get there next year, it's so great to see such support for the LGBT community!

  7. Oooh that monkey is super creepy!

    I like this post though; it's always nice to hear about blogger's lives away from the internet. I hope you can read more this month! I hate not being in the mood to read, but it happens. :)

    That's great the Pride parade was so fun! I wish I could have gone to mine. :)


  8. I loved this post- it's good getting to see what you've been up to this past month. I'm sorry you were lonely though- I think I would be as well. I hope you enjoy the rest of your summer!

  9. hahahah Creepy monkey pictures are the BEST. Serious though, why such a long neck? And what is on his head?!
    So, confession time: I have never seen 500 Days of Summer. I just read a blurb about it online and I think I need to fix that this weekend. :)
    Bonnie @ Sweet Tidbits

  10. Yaay, I'm so glad you decided to join in on the wrap-up posts, Aylee! I seriously love reading these. I'm sorry you had a not-so-good reading month, but it looks like it was filled with lots of exciting events! That pride parade looks awesome, and you watched so many television shows/movies! AND THAT CREEPY MONKEY. <3 I can't believe you bought it -__- Anyway, lovely post, Aylee!

  11. I love Sherlock! So glad you enjoyed it. And I had no idea Lisa Kudrow had a new show - will definitely check that out. She was always my favourite on Friends.

    And AHHH that Monkey!!

  12. Lately I've come to enjoy reading monthly rewind/wrap-up posts so I say go for it. I might, too! The photos from pride parade look so cool and colorful! =D

    Sherlock, bah! I have yet to start watching that show (and many others) but since I love the Robert Downey Jr. movies, I'm bound to love this show as well. (500) Days of Summer is such a beautiful movie! And yes, Monters Inc. is also a favorite movie of mine and I'm so psyched for Monsters University as well as Despicable Me 2. Yay! =D

  13. I really like this post Aylee. It helps bloggers get to know you outside of reading books. I'm shocked that you attended a Gay Pride Parade. That's pretty cool, we have one here in Portland, I've never gone. My mom has on numerous occasions. Switching topics, that monkey, I'm not sure if I'm on board with that, its a bit creepy looking for my tastes. I think you read a ton of books for June. I'm so happy you read Scorpio Races and I can't wait for you to read and review Jellicoe Road.

  14. I think monthly recap posts are great! I wish I could do it, but then my life is probably too boring for me to write about anything. Because, yanno. Books are basically my life, every day. Anyway. The pride parade looks so fun! Wish we had those kinds of stuff here, but alas. No. My country is probably the most boring. :( Also, I've been DYING to watch 500 Days of Summer. Just never got around to it, I suppose. Glad to hear that MU stood up to your expectations, though of course. It would NEVER be able to beat MI. Is Celia in there? I don't recall seeing her on the movie poster, only a nerdy Randall (that was hilarious, glasses and sweater and all).

    That monkey-thing looks scary as hell. Locking it up is probably a good idea.

    Hope July is as fab as June was for you! Uhhh... apart from brooding around while your bf was gone. ;)

  15. I kind of fall apart when I'm stuck at home by myself, so I completely understand!

    I'm glad you liked Sherlock. It's so good!

  16. What IS that salt-shaker monkey thing? It's SO creepy looking, but definitely the odd sort of gift I'd be drawn to. ;)

    I'm sorry you had a bit of a moody month, but I hope July will bring you some great reads! I'm generally not much of a people person, so I quite like being by myself, though I do understand how your mood can affect your reading. It happens to me often, if not all the time.

    And I would love for this to be a regular feature! I hope you decide to keep doing it. :)

  17. I'm loving your take on this monthly recap and I wholly support it becoming a regular feature!! I'm sorry your bf being away had such a downer effect, I'd be the same though if the bf was every away for too long, I missed him a lot when I was in NYC. I loved your Pride pics on Instagram and I'm glad you had such a memorable (albeit intense) experience! I'd love to attend a Pride in a big Canadian city - closest for me would be Montréal which would probably be insane :D Speaking of insane: YOU watched & loved Sherlock!!!! Eeeep, ok so Doctor Who is even more of a MUST now because the 2 Sherlock Writers (Steven Moffat & Mark Gatiss, a.k.a. Mycroft) are both involved with Doctor Who! Moffat is the lead writer/executive producer of Doctor Who & 'Mycroft' has written Who episodes and even appeared in 2 episodes :D *breathes* k, geek-fest, done. >.<

    PS- you're very brave to bring that mysterious and evil looking monkey home with you. Eeeek! O.O Make sure to keep that bad boy locked away and covered up. Hopefully he's the only one of it's kind, cause I can so see my best friend gifting me that ironically. *shudders*

  18. Awh, Aylee, it's definitely okay to be sad when missing your boyfriend. That's completely understandable, and even though it affected your mood for reading, I'm pretty sure you still read more than I. And I don't have an excuse, haha!

    Love the photos of the pride parade! I've heard some things about it and how it was so much fun! Glad you had a fantastic time. :)

    Oh, and of course, Sherlock... Everyone loves that show! I wish I could say the same, but I've never seen it. D: But I HAVE seen 500 Days of Summer, which I adored. Maybe I'll have to watch it a second time and see if I love it even more, like you did!

    Lovely post, Aylee! I thought it was just right--not too personal at all. I liked getting some insight in your non-blogging life! :)

  19. I like these types of posts. It's always nice to learn a bit more about other bloggers' personal lives.

    That monkey is so creepy! I can't believe you bought it ... even if it was only $3!

    I haven't watched any of the movies or shows you watched yet but if you recommend them, I'll see if I can find them. I've been wanting to watch 500 Days of Summer for a while any because of Joseph Gordon-Levitt.

  20. I LOVE browsing thrift stores, flea markets, and antique shops! I find the absolute best things. :) The creepier the better!

  21. I enjoyed reading your recap of the month - I don't see myself doing it since I would probably say "I graded papers and wondered how these kids ever got to high school" over and over, thanks to my job - and that monkey is CREEPY

    Uncanny valley to the max, dear.

    Also, I'm with you on the mood, sometimes I just don't feel like reading and I even feel like I do a diservice to the books I read under said circumstances because I tend to be a bit harsher on them.

    And Sherlock is AWESOME!!!! Kthnxbai

  22. I like updates like this!! I'm a mood reader too and in the past few weeks I just haven't been in the mood to read, so I've been crocheting and watching movies or TV shows. Sherlock is awesome! LOVE that one. Benedict Cumberbatch is wonderful!

    And you can keep that monkey. I think I'd worry it'd murder me in the night, too!

  23. I love recap posts! I really need to read The Scorpio Races and that monkey is *super* creepy!

    Kate @ Ex Libris

  24. Sherlock!!! LOVE that show!

    That monkey is freaking me out. Seriously. *hides*

    I'm pretty fond of Feedly! It's similar to Google Reader, so that's probably why I prefer it over Bloglovin (but I still have bloglovin anyway).

    Hope you enjoy VAMPIRE ACADEMY! :D

  25. Sherlock!! The only thing that makes me hate the Hobbit is that I have to wait longer for season 3.
    My boys loved Monster's University. But I missed Boo too.
    AH the evil monkey-thing! I'm so glad you are hiding it. I would worry about you otherwise. :)

  26. I totally love this post Aylee, it's so much fun! The pride parade looks amazing, and I am in total agreement with you about Sherlock. I am so addicted to that show. Will the next season EVER get here?! I totally feel your pain on mood reading too. When I'm feeling down or just out of sorts, it's really hard to get into a book. Hopefully your July is better!

    I totally love your creepy monkey, and yes, you should DEFINITELY lock it in the closet. Also, I think your new monkey salt shaker friend would get along famously with another totally sketchy and possibly murderous monkey:


    1. Bahaha! What a coincidence; I had the exact same reaction.

  27. I need to continue to watch Sherlock! I'm not sure why I haven't finished it yet. I LOVED, LOVED Monsters University!
    -Scott Reads It!

  28. I need to read The Scorpio Races badly! I have read all Stiefvater's books except that one.

    - Juhina @ Maji Bookshelf