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Taylor Jenkins Reid: a love letter

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taylor jenkins reid

In addition to podcasts, I also really like to listen to audiobooks while I drive – especially for the longer trips I have to make. Being able to start a book and finish it in one sitting helps make the trips a little more bearable for sure! Earlier this spring I discovered Taylor Jenkins Reid when I saw a book on Hoopla with a cover I really liked, an interesting title (Maybe in Another Life), and a synopsis that grabbed me:

At the age of twenty-nine, Hannah Martin has lived in six different cities and held countless meaningless jobs. On the heels of leaving yet another city, Hannah moves back to Los Angeles and takes up residence in her best friend Gabby’s guestroom. Hannah goes out to a bar one night with Gabby and meets up with her high school boyfriend, Ethan. Just after midnight, Gabby asks Hannah if she’s ready to go. A moment later, Ethan offers to give her a ride later if she wants to stay. Hannah hesitates. What happens if she leaves with Gabby? What happens if she leaves with Ethan? In concurrent storylines, Hannah lives out the effects of each decision. Quickly, these parallel universes develop into radically different stories with large-scale consequences for Hannah, as well as the people around her.

I listened to the entire book and was rattled by it by the time I got home – without spoiling too much (because you really should read it for yourself) it made me think a lot about the hundreds of decisions I make each day and how each one impacts my life. Since then, I’ve read all four of her books (and discovered that she’s also contributed to my favorite blog, The Billfold!) and enjoyed every single one, so this installment of book club is dedicated to my girl crush, TJR.

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November 16, 2016

top 5: my favorite podcasts

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podcast - podcasts

Lately I’ve been doing a LOT of driving, and sometimes my brain zones out while I listen to music and I might miss a turn or two. Listening to podcasts seems to make the drive quicker – having a story to follow and focus really helps. Here are a few of my favorites, with some bonus suggestions as well!

This Life with Dr. Drew & Bob Forrest: Anyone who knows me knows that I just adore Dr. Drew. I’m not sure why I’m so drawn to him – maybe that he’s an utter silver fox, or maybe I truly am attracted to intelligence. He’s been a really huge inspiration in my life, starting from the days Loveline aired on MTV, through his various media appearances and finally Celebrity Rehab With Dr. Drew. This Life with Dr. Drew and Bob Forrest features some of the best parts of Rehab – Dr. Drew, Bob Forrest, and interviews with other important players from the series, like Shelley Sprague, Amber Smith, Andy Dick and more – so it was a natural draw for me. As a bonus, check out some of Dr. Drew’s other podcasts as well – there’s one for any kind of mood you’re in.

It’s not a surprise to anyone either that I was obsessed with Glee during a particularly sensitive time in my life, and the Ladygang podcast is co-hosted by one of the Glee girls. Becca Tobin, Jac Vanek, and Keltie Knight host this weekly lifestyle podcast with some really cool guests (Lea Michele’s two-part episode is great) and they’ve expanded into a blog as well!

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November 9, 2016

my favorite holiday specials & where to stream them

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I’m not very particular about the seasonality of media – I’ll watch my favorite movies and specials when I want, and now, with the miracle of the internet, I don’t have to wait for the 25 Days of Christmas to hope that they’ll air my fringe-y holiday clips. Today, I thought I’d share some of my favorite holiday TV and movies!

Probably my favorite Christmas movie of all time is A Very Brady Christmas. I’m not joking – I get shit about this all the time, but in a very unironic way, it is one of my very favorite movies. It may be the warm childhood feelings I get from remembering the time I spent watching this at my grandmother’s, sprawled out on the floor in the living room or in my grandpa’s room, curled up in his recliner. The stressful suspense in Carol and Mike trying to surprise each other, the comedy in trying to find a spot for all the kids and their families to sleep, the suspense when Mike goes in to a falling building…

Plus, there’s a shot of Bobby Brady eating a lunch of Chinese food, a cheeseburger, a pop the size of my head, and basically everything that is great in this world. In that moment, he is truly my spirit animal. You can pop the popcorn and catch this bad boy in full over on Hulu.

As an unironic celebrator of Festivus, I would be remiss not to include the Seinfeld episode “The Strike.” Probably everyone has seen it, but it’s not December without hearing Frank Costanza bellow “I got a lot of problems with you people, and now, you’re gonna hear about it!” Seinfeld streams on Hulu.

Another of my favorites from back in the day is Christmas Eve on Sesame Street. I always really felt for Big Bird here – he just wants to validate what he has always believed after Oscar causes him to second guess. Plus, Mr. Hooper’s presence really just tugs at the heartstrings, and how can you beat Count, Bert, Ernie, and the others playing crack the whip on ice? Check it out on YouTube.

And no holiday season would be complete without A Muppet Family Christmas. The cameo by Jim Henson just a few years before his death is very sweet, and I love seeing the entire Muppet family together here on YouTube.

What are your favorite holiday specials? Do you watch them all year, or reserve them for the holiday season?

December 18, 2015