Welcome to Round 31 of this little series I started of all the things in life I’m loving and learning lately! Here you’ll find everything from the books I’m currently reading to the products I’m loving to the shows I’m watching (which, spoiler alert–won’t be very many or very exciting, since I’m not a huge t.v. or movie watcher). If you want to check out past editions of the series, click here.
Note: There are affiliate links in this post, which means I may get a small percentage of any sale made at no extra cost to you.
- Now that we live in a more rural area, we are much farther away from the grocery stores that I’m used to shopping at. Because we have some big financial goals we’re working on (post to come soon!), I’m looking for ways to trim our budget wherever I can. First up? Groceries! I’ve known for a long time that the more I stay out of the grocery store, the less I’ll spend, and that fact coupled with the gas and time it takes to drive to the grocery store, the more I’ve been exploring other options. I recently started getting my produce delivered to me from Misfits Market, which is a company that sells “misfit” produce that has been rejected by grocery stores on the basis of its odd appearance or size, or due to an overabundance of product. I love that this company is trying to drive down the amount of food waste in the U.S., I love that they deliver right to my door, and I really love that the prices are not only affordable, but that it’s saving me even more because the bi-monthly deliveries are keeping me out of the grocery store.
- I’ve chosen to have boxes delivered to me every other week, and I’ve chosen the bigger size box, which includes 3-4 servings (sometimes more, if there’s a surplus) of 14 different kinds of fruits and vegetables that I get to choose myself from the variety they’re currently offering. The big box is just $35, which is a total steal. (What makes it even more of a steal is that all the produce is organic!)
- If you sign up through my referral link HERE, you can get 50% off your first box, but only if you sign up by TOMORROW (12/15). But even if you get the memo past that, you can still sign up through my referral link and save 25%!
- We are slooooowly starting to get the new house in some semblance of order (although the flooring is still not finished in two rooms, which is holding up a significant amount of unpacking and furniture arrangement). One room where the big projects ARE finished? Our master bedroom. We weren’t originally planning on updating the lighting in there, but because of me changing my mind a bit on the big fixture in our entrance, we ended up purchasing two of these relatively inexpensive modern fixtures for our master bedroom, and they make SUCH a big difference! Seriously folks—never, ever underestimate the power of good (and beautiful) lighting!
- I also used some of the Christmas money I got from my dad to finally purchase this tiered produce basket, which I’ve had my eye on for awhile. It’s due to arrive today, and I can’t wait to see how it looks on our table (which we finally got set up) with the Christmas runner that my mom gifted me a few years back!
- My husband and I had an in-home date night this last Saturday and watched the new Mulan movie on Disney+. I personally loved it! I thought the spin they did on the animated classic was imaginative and fun, and the cinematography was beautiful. Anyone else watched it yet? What did you think?
- Also, I know I’ve mentioned this before, but if you don’t have an annual Disney+ membership and want to buy one, you can get one for $32.50 less than the original price by going through my Rakuten referral link. If you sign up through my link, you get $20 cash back on your first online purchase, and so if you sign up on Rakuten and then activate the $12.50 cash back they offer on Disney+, you’ll get your membership for $32.50 less. Definitely a deal worth passing along!
- Lastly, I need you all to weigh in. My kids have been waking up soooo early in the new house (because their bedrooms here let in more natural light), and it’s meant MANY a morning starting for me starting around 6:00, sometimes earlier. I’ve heard really good things about this alarm clock for kids (which changes colors so kids know when it’s time to get up and leave their bedroom), but I’m not as sure about the $50 price tag. Anyone tried a clock like this? Is it worth it? Or do you know of another one that’s similar and less expensive?
I didn’t think my reading life could get much more lackluster than it was last month, but then we moved. And, since I’m still on my own with our 3 kids during the week while my husband’s company is still at their old location (but not for much longer!), I have had almost zero reading time lately. I did finish two books since I last posted though, and I’m in the middle of a few others. Fingers crossed my reading life gets back to normal soon!
Current and Recent Reads
I needed something on the lighter side, and this was definitely a matter of the right book at the right time for me. If you’ve been a reader of the blog for a long time, you’ll know that I have a hard time with books that are pure fluff and nothing more, so romance is often a genre I don’t read much of. However, this particular book had a decent amount of depth, a fun premise (two writers stuck on their current manuscripts decide to challenge each other to write outside their normal niche—the literary writer must pen a romance, and the romance writer has to go literary—and the first one to sell their book wins), and a good dose of humor. While this book had a few scenes that were a bit steamier than I’m normally comfortable reading (or widely recommending), it got a 4-star rating for readability and just being overall an enjoyable read during a stressful time.
I mentioned this on a LALL roundup a few months back, but I only just finished it in the last month. A big part of the reason this only got a 3-star rating from me was due to a mismatch of expectations and reality — I was expecting an interior design book that was all about how certain design elements and choices can invite a cozier, more welcoming atmosphere, but this definitely veered more towards an introspective, spiritual look at what you need to do with your mindset, attitude, and ability to host guests than it did with design choices. While I really liked a lot of the points that were made and thought the photography was beautiful, this just wasn’t quite what I was looking for at this point in time.
Since I’m not even halfway done with the books I’m currently reading, I’ll save them for next month’s round-up. What have YOU been loving and learning lately?