My checklist for 2020

SMM_MRBLE PNY 3 by Her Creative Studio

New year, new list, right? Well, not exactly. I always have the same things on my yearly list of things to do or be, but that’s just how it is, right? Every year, every month, EVERY DAY is a chance to keep trying. And, well, you know, writing down things makes me feel more accountable about doing them, right? Right? :)

Well, okay, here’s my list then. :D

The projects I want to accomplish this year

1 – Get back to yoga and use up my current class card before it expires on October. – I haven’t been to a yoga class in about three months. The studio where my sister and I used to go to closed down and the next closest one where we can use the shared class package we bought is a few minutes farther. Honestly, it’s not really that far but I’ve just been having a hard time getting off my lazy butt and actually going. So that’s on this list. I gotta get back to yoga.

2 – Read 20 books. – Last year my goal was to read at least one book a month, but I managed to finish 20. Although, if we’re going to be technical about it, it was 9 novels and 11 comic books. This year, I want to see if I can still reach that same number. And yeah I will still count comic books. I have so many unread books (physical and digital) that sometimes it feels criminal that I’m not reading any of them at any given time.

3 – Finish my little tarot journal project. – I took an email tarot course last year and was planning to create my own “little white book” but I wasn’t able to get to it and finish the course the way I wanted to. Now I want to go through the course again (I still have all the emails) and finally finish that project. I mean, I already have all the materials I need and I’ve been making little plans in my head about how to do my journal spreads. I just need to get to it.

4 – Sew at least one thing using my sewing machine. – I’ve had that old sewing machine for years. My mom gave it to me, but I never sat down to learn how to use it. I have a list of the sewing projects that I want to do, and though I keep adding to it every time I think of something, nothing ever gets checked off. I need to make time for it. Seriously. So this year my goal is to just finish one, at least one, sewing project.

5 – Do weekly strengthening exercises for my knee again. – I really should be doing this regularly and consistently and forever, but I stopped and I have start it up again. I mean, I should if I want to keep practicing yoga and maybe start running or something. I want to add some sort of cardio activity to my life, that’s all. And I can’t do that if I’m worrying about my knee giving out or whatever.

So, those are the major projects I want to accomplish this year. I also intend to do the usual important stuff like EAT HEALTHY and DRINK MORE WATER and WRITE MORE. I just feel like these things are a given already and they’re in my mind all the time. I just have to do better.

Do you have a list for the year?

This list was inspired by THE CHECKLIST BOOK by Alexandra Franzen. Get the book at your local bookstore, local public library, or order it online: .

My favorite mostly-free stock photography sources

Photo by Her Creative Studio

(Updated January 24, 2023)

I always try to use my own photos on my blog, but I’m not great at taking awesome pictures, so sometimes I refer to my favorite sources of stock photography when I need a gorgeous image for a blog post.

I’m pretty happy about these sites so I wanted to share it. Check out my favorite sources of mostly-free photos.

Her Creative Studio

I discovered Her Creative Studio through Creative Market. One of their styled stock photography bundle was free for the week and I decided to check it out. The featured image of this post is from that bundle. If you’re not ready to be a paid member, you can sign up for their newsletter and get a free photo every month.

Styled Stock Society

Styled Stock Society is also a paid membership, but has free resources for email subscribers. They’re really good images and I’ve used some of them for my Instagram posts.

Death To Stock

I can’t remember when I first found out about Death to Stock, but it was from a newsletter by one of the writers/artists I subscribe to. Can’t remember now who it was. I immediately visited their website and have been a subscriber of their free monthly photos ever since. I love that their free monthly packs have a theme and the photos are always top notch. If you want access to more photos aside from the free monthly, you can sign up for their premium membership.


I discovered Unsplash through an old writing gig. I rarely visit the site now but I’m still subscribed to their newsletter. I just like to keep myself updated with their new stuff, in case something catches my eye.

And that’s it. Haha.

If you want to check out more resources of free stock photography and what not, check out this rad list of design, code and photo sources.

Do you have a go-to source of stock photos? 

Happy New Year! Here we go again!

hello 2018

The start of a new year always makes me feel hopeful. Hopeful that I’ll have better success with my goals for the year. I’ve long given up on “new year’s resolutions” or, rather, I’ve stopped referring to such things as “resolutions” and just think of them as things I want to do or focus on for the year. I guess it helps take the pressure and stress of it all. Hah.

I basically have the same things on my lists every year because, you know, these are some things I want to keep doing. That’s also one of the reasons why I don’t call them resolutions. They’re really nothing new or revolutionary. The ones that are new or different are more like small personal projects for my mind and spirit and sanity. LOL.

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Mid-Year Report: Checking in!

tumbler notebooks computer

I just realized it’s already July and we’re halfway through the year. Thought I should do a mid-year report of some sort just to lay out how my year has been. Also, I wanted to blog about something personal to balance out all the book spotlights I’ve been doing for the last few weeks. I admit, all those bookish posts are a sign of how lazy I am to blog about other things.

Anyway, not gonna ramble long about that. So, I’m basing this mid-year check on my new year post last January. Here we go!

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Hey, 2017! Yayyy.

Hey, folks! Here we are again, aren’t we? It’s the start of another year and I’m sure most of us are just bursting with plans and goals. Well, I hope you guys are because I think it’s always a good thing whether we get around to doing them or not. You’ve got to have something to start on to start, right? Or whatever hahahhh.

Anyway, I do have a few goal-like things (hah!), some of which are kinda the same or similar to the plans and goals I’ve had for the last few years. Hey, I don’t like giving up! But I’ve learned to make things simpler and a little more specific. I mean, “SMART” goals, right? Well, I try.

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Let’s talk about goals

I was hesitant to do a post like this because it seems I write down the same goals year after year and I never get them all done. However, I was reading an email newsletter from The Creative Penn and she mentioned blogging about her goals for accountability purposes, so I thought maybe I should do that, too. Maybe if I do the same thing I’d feel more motivated to work on my own goals and maybe get at least half of them done. Hah, we shall see. But then the start of a new year always makes me feel positive so here is my list of things for 2015:

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Happy New Year, Friends!

I haven’t blogged for realz in months, but I feel like I should kick off the new year with a new post. The past year was a big one – having kicked it off by getting hitched – and I think this new one is going to be big as well. I was thinking of doing the usual ‘year in review’ and then my list for 2015, but I think I’ll just keep it simple this time.

About 2014

So, I got married one year ago and life has never been the same. I know that’s such a cliche but it is what it is and it seems the past year was spent adjusting to a whole new life!

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About these 10 books lists

I’m sure you’ve seen this “10 books” chain post thing on Facebook. The rule goes something like, “HOW TO PLAY: List 10 books that have stayed with you in some way. Don’t take more than a few minutes, and don’t think too hard. It’s not about the “right book” or great works of literature, just ones that have affected you in some way. Doesn’t have to be in order. Then tag 10 friends or more and me so I can see your list.”

I’ve seen friends post their lists – some of the lists are quite impressive, too – and I’ve been tagged once, but I didn’t want to post a list on Facebook because, quite frankly, it makes me feel embarrassed that I haven’t read any of the “greats.” I’m supposed to know these things, but I can’t say I’ve read anything written by the great literary fiction authors of our time or most of the classics while you’re at it. I’m not much of a lit fiction reader and I haven’t read most of the popular ones (even though I have copies of some). The number of classic novels I’ve read? I can count them off with my fingers. GAH. I am terrible.

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Things I’m thankful for and loving today

Because it’s Friday and I’m stalling before I need to get to work.

1. Kat Dennings and Eric Andre from 2 Broke Girls

Kat Dennings – I’ve had a girl crush on since I discovered her gorgeous blog header some years back. I know, I’m weird, but that header photo is gold. Plus she’s really funny on 2 Broke Girls. Eric Andre – I just discovered him on that show, too, and he is frickin’ hilarious. I’m loving them both right now.

Check out this clip from the show. A little background – SPOILER ALERT! – Deke (Eric Andre) is trying to win back Max (Kat Dennings) who doesn’t want to date him anymore because he turned out to be a rich dude.

So funny. I haven’t seen any of the episodes from this season.

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