May. Where do I even start?
I had so much going on, and as things begin to open back up, it feels like my life is slowly coming back. But it’s like there’s a huge gap between now and March 2020 during which time stood still, and I’m having trouble wrapping my mind around the fact that in the fall, I’m going to be starting senior year, applying and (hopefully) getting accepted to college, and turning 17. I feel like my life was on pause and I’m having trouble catching back up to reality.
I didn’t blog so much this month, but it’s okay because I did a lot of other stuff.
- I got vaccinated!
- Like just about everyone, I listened to Olivia Rodrigo’s new album on repeat and I think I have become a fan. “brutal” just about sums up my life.
- I rode a horse! (Childhood dream come true)
- Even though I’m a junior, I had terrible premature senioritis
- I went to the beach for Memorial Day weekend, was inspired by the fresh salt air and once I spent the entire weekend working on personal projects and ignoring school, I realized exactly how burnt out I had been.
Well, I got bitten by the nonfiction bug this month. I read 8 books: 4 fiction and 4 nonfiction.
These Violent Delights by Chloe Gong (YA, fantasy, historical fiction)- this book was really hyped, but it wasn’t my favorite. While the setting was super interesting (1920s Shanghai), I didn’t really get the historical vibe from the book and the plot became tedious after a while. I found myself caring less about the characters and just wanted them to hurry up and solve the (very gory, specific and weird) mystery. I just don’t seem to mesh well with YA fantasy, I guess.
The Guest List by Lucy Foley (general/adult, mystery/thriller)- another hyped one. This book was entertaining, but after the third reveal or so, it really was getting far-fetched . It was fine to destress after my exams though. Certain parts were also a bit too risque for me
Since You’ve Been Gone by Morgan Matson (YA, contemporary, romance)– it’s that time of year again…. I enjoyed reading this book, but it wasn’t super memorable and I’m not sure what the message was supposed to be; certain things were contradictory.
Challenger Deep by Neal Shusterman (YA, contemporary)– I actually got this book in December and featured it in my winter book haul. I don’t know why I waited so long to read it because t was great, but probably one of the most disturbing fiction books I’ve read in a while. I don’t know how Shusterman managed to put me right in the main character’s head like that.
Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup by John Carreyrou (business, true crime)– My friend recommended this book to me so I decided to pick it up. It traces the Theranos scandal, a biotech company whose CEO took “fake it till you make it” a bit too seriously and sold completely unreliable blood tests to thousands of patients. I had no idea the tech world was so smoke-and-mirror-y.
We Will Not Be Silent: The White Rose Student Resistance Movement That Defied Adolf Hitler by Russell Freedman (historical, WW2)– So, I had this book on my TBR for a while because I watched a Ted-Ed video like six months ago during one of my quarantine YouTube binges about this resistance movement and found it so inspiring and unrecognized that I just had to find out more. This book was technically MG and it was really short and simplified– I wished it were more in-depth, but it took less than an hour to read and I learned things.
Midnight in Chernobyl: The Untold Story of the World’s Greatest Nuclear Disaster by (science, historical)– I can’t remember why this was on my TBR, but it was and I didn’t know that much about Chernobyl, I didn’t live through it, so I decided to read it, and wow– I learned a lot. This was a pretty long book, but it did a good job explaining the history of the nuclear industry, what went wrong with reactor #4, the initial government coverup and all of the aftermath.
Into Thin Air: A Personal Account of the Mt. Everest Disaster by Jon Krakuar– I don’t know if I will ever understand people who put their lives on the line climbing Mt. Everest. This is Krakuar’s memoir of the 1996 ill-fated Mt. Everest climbing expedition and what went wrong. Incidentally, when I mentioned to my mom that I was reading this I learned that she is extremely obsessed with Mt. Everest, has read this book and watched a bunch of documentaries, and then we had a half hour conversation about the commercialization of Everest.
I didn’t blog that much in May, but I have so much to post in June. For once, I actually have a bunch of posts lined up. This month’s posts:
and today’s post!
I also started working on my Pinterest to see if I can get blog traffic from there. Here’s my profile! I’ve been going through a Canva phase lately, so I’ve just been playing around making pin images and seeing if they can get clicks. I’m a little skeptical since I’m not very good at making nice-looking graphics, but we’ll see.
Last Month’s Goals:
1) BE MORE POSITIVE
I think I did an okay job with this one. I’ve adopted a new life motto from the quote: “you can’t go back and change the beginning, but you can start where you are and change the ending” because I know I tend to stew over my past mistakes a lot and end up spending lots of time kicking myself for things that are now in the past.
2) GET ORGANIZED
I did a lot to get myself organized this month, but I still think I can do more. It’ll be easy to do a little “life reset” once school ends (just 3 more weeks…)
3) STUDY SMARTER, NOT HARDER
I don’t know about this one… I don’t think I did a great job studying for my exams this year, but again, my new life motto okay.
This Month’s Goals:
1) Do A Detox Day/Chill week
I am going to force myself when school is over to take one day where I do nothing “productive”. No phone, no laptop, no work, no coding, no blogging, no tutoring, no organization for school clubs, no prepping for next year’s classes, no college apps, nothing. I’m going to need to have lots of energy for next year and I need to give myself a break from the endless hustle culture (a post idea for another day) I will just hang out with my family, take a walk, read something (but only if I feel like it), maybe paint my nails or organize my bookshelf or something.
Plus, I find that when I don’t do something for a while, I come back to it with renewed passion but if I force myself to do it when I don’t want to, I’ll get burned out VERY quickly.
2) Spend more time with my family
Quite frankly I spend a lot of time sitting on my laptop and ignoring people, so I want to make it a priority to spend more time with my family this month! And no binge-watching YouTube, which has been a huge time-suck for me this past year.
3) Be more chill
I can be a little too intense sometimes, especially when it comes to school. I have actually gotten exponentially better since the pandemic put some things into perspective, but I still get myself extremely stressed for exams. I’ve been trying to put more energy into things like my blog and my programming projects, especially for the stress-fest that is college application season, right now approaching terrifyingly on the horizon.