Happy new year, everyone!!
2022 feels even less real than every new year, because it means we’ve been dealing with this pandemic for 3 years? No! I refuse to believe it!
To address the elephant in the room: I completed my isolation for COVID and am almost completely asymptomatic, and I recovered really well! Thank you all for your well wishes, it means a lot. I hope you all remain healthy in 2022!!
Despite the whole catching COVID thing, and finals hell week, December was a strangely good month for me. Honestly I think isolation did something to me, maybe because since I had nothing to do, I ended up doing things that made me happy!
I read 12 books, as per my usual December tradition where I girlboss it and read a bunch of books to reach my reading goal! I read a bunch of non-novels, which I wish I would do throughout the year like I told myself I would in 2021, but it’s all right!!! I had a good time devouring all these stories during COVID isolation, and I’m happy to see all the different genres/types I read.
I also annotated one of my books (with sticky notes) and I loved it so much? It took me longer to read, but I love getting to flip through the book and see all the thoughts I left on its pages. I’ve annotated books before for school and really enjoyed it, so I don’t know why I never thought to do it with books I read for pleasure. But I definitely want to try doing more of it in 2022 too!
- Patron Saints of Nothing Randy Ribay // great character development and portrayal of recent Filipino politics and history, though I had a few minor qualms ★★★★☆ [3.5]
- Daughter of the Deep Rick Riordan // very fun and engaging read! great exploration of power corruption, duty, and opportunities for redemption ★★★★☆
- Postcolonial Love Poem Natalie Diaz // some of the flowery language wasn’t my taste, but overall a beautiful and lyrical collection with hard-hitting themes [no rating]
- High Class Homos momozerii // cute and fun! always love me some wlw/mlm solidarity [no rating for now]
- Dancing at the Pity Party Tyler Feder // such a personal, heartfelt, sad (but also humorous at times) memoir—it really touched me ★★★★☆
- Purple Hyacinth Sophism & Ephemerys // some of the vibes are off for me (and not just in the sense that it’s about murder, cops, etc) but it was entertaining! ★★★☆☆
- This Wound Is a World Billy-Ray Belcourt // really did NOT vibe with the writing style and I wished for more exploration of the themes presented [no rating]
- Witch Hat Atelier Vol 5 Shirahama Kamome // I missed this manga series so much and the story was just as heartwarming and cute as I remembered! ★★★★☆ [3.5]
- Pockets Amal El-Mohtar // so short, yet so impactful! such a touching, magical little story ★★★★☆
- Witch Hat Atelier Vol 6 Shirahama Kamome // definitely one of my favorite volumes, I just love the way this series portrays magic and learning!! ★★★★☆
- The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine Ilan Pappé // heartbreaking to read, but so necessary. I really appreciated how detailed and comprehensive it was [no rating]
- On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous Ocean Vuong // [reread] I understood this more my second time around, which made me feel even more emotionally destroyed! Ocean Vuong’s writing truly eviscerates you ★★★★☆
I got these books for Christmas, and I’m so excited about them! (Aside from This Wound is a World, which I already read.) I’ve been meaning to read The Sword of Kaigen and Imagine Us Happy for so long, and I finally got a copy of Light From Uncommon Stars after my preorder of it was unexpectedly canceled. So I’m very happy with this haul!
[Books pictured: The Sword of Kaigen, A Dowry of Blood, Imagine Us Happy, Light From Uncommon Stars, To Break a Covenant, This Wound is a World]
I still have lots of end of year content to post, since I like to save a lot of it for January in case something happens in the last days of the year! So you’ll still be seeing all that halfway through January, sorry…. I’ll be going back to school so we’ll see how I fare with time management, but I truly feel so motivated to blog again and it’s wonderful!
But more importantly, it’ll be my 5 year blogiversary in a few weeks!!! (5 years… can you believe it… She (my blog) can go to kindergarten now…) As usual, I’ll be celebrating with a Q&A, so feel free to comment your questions or leave them anonymously in this google form!
THIS MONTH’S POSTS
- Marie @ Drizzle and Hurricane Books wrote an excellent discussion on why blogs still matter with the rise in social media’s popularity!
- Kal @ Reader Voracious discussed the value of blogs as a marketing tool!
- Ash @ Starlight Strands is making her blogging comeback and I can’t wait for all her new content!
- A post from November, but I didn’t have this section in my November recap, so: Fadwa @ Word Wonders gave tips on how to make content while busy, which I definitely needed!
I thought I would have time to write at least SOMETHING during my break, but unfortunately I didn’t write anything. I also just… don’t feel ready to look at a blank page again, after spending so much time not writing? I know I just have to force myself to Do It, but I feel intimidated, which makes me feel so silly.
I’m feeling a bit more inspiration to write now, though, especially since I read some of my old stuff and was pleasantly surprised by how it wasn’t as bad as I expected. So hopefully I can actually sit down and make myself write something in January!
My semester finally ended and I was so happy. I definitely didn’t do as well on my exams as I’d hoped to (I haven’t gotten the scores back on everything yet but I know it wasn’t my best work), but at this point I really don’t care anymore so it’s all right!
My holidays were unfortunately ruined when I got COVID, but I tried my best to just have a good time with myself in isolation, and I did! It was very chill, and I slowly started being more active online again. I opened my gifts in my room on facetime with my family, so I at least wasn’t completely alone! My mom gave me airpods, and I have used them constantly since I got them…
Aside from that, not much went on… I did dance a lot though, which was of course enjoyable!
Also, my COVID story if anyone wants to know (click!):
I had a headache, cough, and chills one night, then woke up the next day with a fever, headache, cough, congestion, and muscle ache. My headache and fever broke in less than 24 hours, but the cough and congestion lasted most of my isolation.
Going back to school… Things should ease up a bit for me now, but I know there’s still a lot of (IB) work that I’ll have to do and I’m not excited about that! Usually, returning to school after winter break makes my mental health plummet, so I’m uh. really hoping that doesn’t happen!
Dance convention/competition! Honestly, this convention could be cancelled because of Omicron (and I’m lowkey hoping it does get cancelled…). But if it isn’t, I’ll be attending it at the end of the month and competing a few pieces—including my solo! It’ll be my first time competing a solo so I’m a little nervous, but usually I don’t care much for competitions in general so I’m holding on to that.
My goals are to stick to my blogging content schedule, ease myself back into studying Thai regularly again, and perhaps write? I don’t know how plausible this all is with my return to school, but I just want to be able to stick to healthy routines!