Bookish Features

Unique Blogger Award

Hello! I just recently got nominated by the lovely Autumn at ChapterMalliumpkin for the Unique Blogger Award! She is so upbeat and positive all of the time. I’m grateful for this nomination. If you haven’t checked her blog out, you should!

The Rules

  • Thank and share the link of the blogger who has shown love to you by nominating you for The Unique Blogger Award
  • Answer their three questions
  • In the spirit of sharing love and solidarity with our blogging family, nominate 8-13 blogs for the same award and ask them three new questions

Questions from Autumn

  1. How did you come around to starting your blog?
    I’ve always been a big reader. My good friend Bre at Paws and Paperbacks had her own blog, and I decided to just start my own. I was already reviewing on Goodreads and using NetGalley.
  2. What are three songs that describe you and your beautiful soul?
    1.

    2.

    3.
  3. What are three books that made you emotional and never want to let go of?
    1. Me Before You – JoJo Moyes
    2. A Walk to Remember – Nicholas Sparks
    3. An Authentic Experience – Kelly Wittmann

My Nominations

Rukky
Nikita
Alyssa
Susan
Kayla
Flora
Ali
Alana
Brittany

Please don’t feel obligated if you do not want to participate. For those of you who do want to participate and I didn’t tag you, help yourself!

My Three Questions

  1. What was one highlight of your book blogging career?
  2. If you were to have dinner with any book character, who would it be and why?
  3. Which characters remind you most of yourself and why?

Thanks for reading and until next time, health and happiness!

Bookish Features

Mystery Blogger Award

Hello! I just recently got nominated by Chapter Malliumpkin for The Mystery Blogger Award! This is the first time I’ve been nominated for this award and it was such a splendid surprise when I checked my blog and found this! Check out Autumn’s blog! She is so creative and I adore the bookish photos she takes!

What is the Mystery Blogger Award?

The Mystery Blogger Award is an award for amazing bloggers with ingenious posts. Their blog not only captivates; it inspires and motivates. They are one of the best out there, and they deserve every recognition they get. This award is also for bloggers who find fun and inspiration in blogging; and they do it with so much love and passion.

 

The Rules
1. Put the award logo/image on your blog.
2. List the rules.
3. Thank whoever nominated you and provide a link to their blog.
4. Mention the creator of the award and provide a link as well.
5. Tell your readers 3 things about yourself.
6. You have to nominate 10 – 20 people.
7. Notify your nominees by commenting on their blog.
8. Ask your nominees any 5 questions of your choice.
9. Share a link to your best post(s).

Also, a huge thanks to Okoto from Okoto Enigma’s Blog for creating this award to bring light to wonderful bloggers!

Three Facts About Me

  1. This is the first time I’m coming out and saying it and I’m not sure how I feel about it, but I figure it is time. Mental health has been a recent(ish) acknowledgement in the Young Adult Genre. I’ll be honest, I never thought it was a real thing in the past. However, early last year, I went through a really hard time (I won’t go into details, but I struggled a lot) and was actually diagnosed with Clinical Depression. It still can be a struggle, but is (for the most part) under control. The bookish community was super supportive during that time (and they didn’t even know it!) and continues to be as awareness is becoming more prominent in our society. So, just a shout out to the bookish community! You are all so supportive ALL of the time.

2. I’m pretty much a female fix-it! A year after I bought my house, I redid my kitchen ALL by myself besides the flooring (my dad helped me with that). I redid the counter and cabinets, painted, new flooring, everything. It turned out super nice compared to the outdated kitchen that existed when I bought my house. Even today, I will just figure things out if they are broken, and I’ve even taught some guys home repair, or even things as simple as putting up pictures on the wall! Does anyone teach their children basic means of survival? haha But, my ideal job would be to be a house flipper.

3. My parents actually have a hobby farm! They have Nigerian goats, ducks, and chickens. The ducks are pretty much like dogs and greet anyone who drives onto the driveway. The UPS guy said they greeted him the other day! haha

 

Autumns Questions for Me


1. What was the hardest thing you overcame this year?
Since I technically received this last year, we will go with 2019. 2019 was a HARD year, especially in the beginning and got much better as time went on. The beginning of the year, my ex had actually bought a ring. We had a date and place set, but luckily didn’t put any money down yet. Time was going fast and I didn’t want to buy a dress without a ring, so I was getting stressed considering I had less than six months left. Well, he decided that his family needed him more than I did, and not only called off a wedding, but dumped me because they needed his focus and MAYBE we could date in the fall after his family had things all settled. Marriage is all about working together as a team. He was an individual, so it was a blessing in disguise, but caused a lot of hurt (as I mentioned in three things you wouldn’t know about me). I’m not sure how you can go from buying a ring to dumping someone, but it is what it is. I’m blessed to have such a supportive group of people in my life because I really had to lean on them during that time.

2. What is your favorite holiday tradition?
I think I’ve mentioned it a couple of times before, but my mom is an immigrant from Poland. She left when the country was still under communist rule. Christmas Eve is actually the big day for us during Christmas. We celebrate Wigilia, which translates into the Latin word Vigil, meaning generally Polish people go to midnight Mass (Catholics). I don’t know if you’ve ever gone to a midnight Mass, but they are much longer and I’m old, so I can’t stay up that late. We went before Wigilia at my aunt’s this year. What is tradition, is that it is the Feast of the Seven Fishes, meaning no meat from any other animal. I love it because I’m not a big meat eater in general, but my family waits until midnight and eats at least two pounds of bacon haha. But the best part of the tradition is that before anyone can eat, you go around to every person present and share a wafer offering well-wishes for the upcoming year.

3. What five books would you like to receive before the year is over?



4. If you could make one wish right now, what wish would you make and why?
Honestly, I’m becoming a marshmallow as I get old. I just want my friends and family to be happy and healthy.

 

5. Tell me two books you’re anticipating for the first half of 2020!

 

My Questions
1. What is one personal goal you have for 2020?
2. If you received $1M, what would you do with it?
3. What is one backlist book you’ve been meaning to read for years and haven’t?
4. What is a new bookish goal for 2020 that you haven’t done prior?
5. If you could meet any author, who would it be and why?

The Nominations
Kayla
Ali
Susan
Erica
Paige
Nikita
Sara
Emer
Kristen
Shanah

It’s okay if tags and awards aren’t your thing. No one should feel obligated to do this unless they want to.


Thanks again to Autumn for nominating me for the Mystery Blogger Award. It was such an honor and made my day. Thanks for everyone who reads my posts and continues to support my bookish obsession. You are are so wonderful and supportive!

Bookish Features

They Don’t Make Men Like They Used To

This isn’t something that I would usually post on my page, but it is something that has been circulating in the back of my mind for quite some time now and I just wanted to get it all out there. Who knows?! Maybe someone else agrees. Here goes…

Please note that this is a generalization based on my own experiences. I realize that all men are not like this. Any men who are not like what you’re about to read, hit me up 😉 hahah jp

What Most Men are Missing Today

Yes, most of us are all strong, independent women these days, but that doesn’t mean we don’t envy the relationships our grandparents and even parents (this is more rare these days) have with their significant others. In all honesty, I have been more successful in my life compared to some of the guys I’ve dated, but that doesn’t mean I don’t long for certain characteristics or want someone reliable in my life.

Here are some aspects many men are missing in society today:

1. Respect

Love me for me. Not who you want me to be. Not for my aesthetics. Not for what I have. Think of how your decision will affect me before making it. Think of my needs, as well as your own. Don’t put yourself in a situation to jeopardize the relationship. Don’t cheat on me physically, emotionally, or visually. Prioritize your time so that you can give me the attention I deserve. No excuses.


2. Ambition

Strive to be the best person you can be. Strive to be the best boyfriend/husband you can be. Never settle (well, settle just for me being the only girl). Don’t just be content with how things are, but constantly try to make things better. I don’t want to take care of you. I ain’t yo mama! Let’s make each other better, while also making ourselves better.


3. Chivalry

Open the door for me. Pay for a date that you asked me out on. Protect me from others (both verbally and physically), even though I know I can protect myself. Be my backup. Treat me like a Queen, and I’ll treat you like a King.


4. Romanticism

There used to be a sense of pursuit. Courting. And now, with that gone, we have a gray line of how dating should be. Dates have turned into “hangouts”. Intimacy is given too freely, without any meaning behind it. Write me little notes. Buy me flowers sometimes. Do something nice for me. Show me you care, don’t just say it. We all know that “actions speak louder than words”.


5. Depth

Don’t just talk to me for my body. Let’s talk about things other than our favorites and what we like to do. Why not even experience some of those things together?! Let’s get deep. Let’s talk about things that randomly come into our heads, things that make us rethink life as we know it, things that you may not have the confidence to tell anyone else. Let’s actually converse. Stay up late and not even realize that the time flew by.


6. Confidence

Confidence to be themselves. To not care what anyone else thinks. To take a girl dancing even though you make look like a fool, just to make her smile. Confidence to meet friends and family and WANT to impress them, but still be who you are. Confidence that the relationship won’t implode and keeping her and getting to know her at bay. Confidence in the relationship and willing to step out into the unknown, willing to take a dive.


7. Selflessness

Probably one of the most important of all. This is an estimate (and may seem harsh), but I truly believe only 5% of people really truly romantically love the person they marry, or even at all. Let me explain! Take out everything and everyone else besides your significant other out of the picture…would you be happy? Is the love that you have with that person sustainable just in itself? That makes me sad. So many people need social media (FaceBook, Instagram, whatever…I get it, I got rid of FaceBook four years ago and I wanted to check it every second of every day during that two week delete timeframe because I knew I couldn’t) or material things to be happy. If you are happy as you are, and think of that other person before yourself (as long as you are happy!), then that is true love. Putting that other person before yourself, for the betterment of the person and the relationship (also for “the relationship” is key because there is such a thing as putting someone else first but it not being better for the relationship) is one of the most important aspects in a potential significant other is crucial in my eyes.

 

And girls, that doesn’t leave you off of the hook, either! I always think to myself before I do anything how it will affect the other person (with what is best for me in mind, as well). Can I do for someone else what I am asking of them? The answer should be yes, and it shouldn’t come in the form of a chore, but a want. A want to put a smile on that person’s face, a want for them to be happy.

Book Reviews

The Art of Raising a Puppy by Monks of New Skete

The Art of Raising a PuppyTitle: The Art of Raising a Puppy
Author: Monks of New Skete
Rating: ★★★

What of ourselves? In actuality the monk’s journey is everyone’s journey, though in our frenetic world of activity and distraction we often miss the fact that we are also desert wanderers. Who or what leads us? In this day and age, we are dangerously out of touch with the nonhuman world around us, leaving our hearts dulled and our vision blurred. Nothing impresses us anymore, and we travel farther into a disharmonious cavern of individualism, with ourselves as guides. We arrogantly “process” reality through preconceived notions that are sterile and cold. Our world is stripped of a profound and compelling mystery.

Some of you may be wondering why my blog is named “Synopses by Sarge” when my name is Nikki. For those of you that are close to me, you’ll know it is because of recent acquisition of my new best friend and companion, Sarge, also know as my black German Shepherd puppy (Christmas picture of Sarge from the breeder shown below).IMG_5846

The Art of Raising a Puppy is the second novel I have read written by the Monks of New Skete (How To Be Your Dog’s Best Friend being the first). The first was recommended by my breeder and I am so grateful for the recommendation. Surprisingly not super technical in verbage (I expected the writing to be insufferably proper), the ease with which all new owners can read and learn about the proper technique for raising a puppy was pleasant and fulfilling.

Learning the value of silence is learning to listen to, instead of screaming at, reality: opening your mind enough to find what the end of someone else’s sentence sounds like, or listening to a dog until you discover what is needed instead of imposing yourself in the name of training.

Having had a dog present in my life for all but four months (the time between the death of a previous dog and receiving a new generation of doggy life), I became attune to the “myths” of training. Granted, all of my family’s previous dogs were well-behaved, I have come across dogs who didn’t possess these same qualities: piddling in excitement of new people, greeting by jumping up, and bad reception to recall to name a few. By reading this novel, I learned that to really train your dog to be a part of your every day life successfully, you need to understand your dog. Sounds easy, but it is actually quite difficult. We may interpret behaviors based on what we have heard previously and act in accordance with that way, when, in reality, the way we act has the complete opposite effect.

For example, I mentioned earlier the piddling in excitement or submission at the greeting of owners or when meeting new people. From reading the words of wisdom by the Monks of New Skete, I interpreted this very act wrong from what I have heard in the past having seen this as a dog being over-excited. A very submissive dog will piddle at the feet of his owner or someone new as a sign of submission. This could be a reaction from the way we approach the dog, with high-pitched voices or looming above the dog. A way to infringe upon this is to crouch down with arms wide open, or to have the dog sit as we greet our friend. A dog is less likely to piddle while sitting as it is uncomfortable for them.

Overall, this novel was a great refresher to read before getting another best friend and companion (it’s been 13 and a half years since my last puppy). Not only did it teach me the basic principles of raising a puppy, but it helped me to better understand my puppy as an individual. Knowing this will create a lasting impression on both of us and strengthen our relationship with each other. I would definitely recommend this for anyone getting a puppy for the first time or if it has been a while since having a puppy.

Bookish Features

Winter Jam 2018

2018-logo

If you have never heard of Winter Jam before and you are Christian, you need to go! It was one of the best concerts I have ever been to…and there were so many talented artists there!

So the story goes that I was originally looking for Jordan Feliz concerts (because I adore him). Well, I happened to stumble upon this concert that not only featured Jordan Feliz, but Skillet, and a new favorite, Dan Bremnes. Being a few weeks after my brother’s birthday and knowing that he also enjoys Skillet, I figured what other birthday present could compare? Plus, who wouldn’t love my company?! haha

P.S. I apologize ahead of time for gracing everyone with my beautiful singing voice you may hear in the videos. The sound quality may be a little lacking…too much bass (said only me ever).

First up…Dan BremnesATT00001
All of his music is really catchy and just so positive, I don’t know how you could ever be in a bad mood listening to it.

 

Next up…Jordan Feliz, the man of my night
“Witness”

“Beloved”

 

Last but certainly not least…Skillet!

So, this is how they opened the show…Not complaining whatsoever! Looked much cooler in person!
“Feel Invincible”

Jen Ledger rocking on the drums
“The Resistance”

Who can not think John Cooper is one of the most attractive guys out there?! Not only that, but he acts pretty much like Bane (any superhero/villain nerds out there like me?!) in this video:
“Sick”

 

One surprisingly great addition to the concert was John Crist. Those of you who know me know that it takes a lot to make me laugh. Not only that, but I really haven’t found any stand up comedians to be funny. That all changed last Friday when John Crist walked on the stage. I was literally crying.

As for overall experience, I would give this an easy cropped-star1cropped-star1cropped-star1cropped-star1cropped-star1. I will definitely be going back next year!

Bookish Features

A Letter To My Ex

Dear Ex,

It’s been months since we dated. More time has passed than the time we spent together. I still wonder why all of it had to happen the way it did. Why was I not enough? Why did my feelings not matter? What more could I have done to show you how much I cared for you?

I probably never told you enough how proud I was of you. You were always looking out for others even when they didn’t reciprocate it to you. Always giving everyone the benefit of the doubt. You were the guy that was always there when a family member or friend needed you. It hurt me to see how loving you were towards them, but they only fit you in when you were convenient to them or when it was beneficial to them. I didn’t want anyone to hurt you.

I wish things didn’t end on such a bad note. I wish we could’ve had that final “goodbye”. I wanted to feel like I was the most important thing to you always and a thousand times more important than those who came before me. I wanted you to be the one who stayed. Who never left. The one I could tell anything and everything to. Who would be there whenever I was having a bad day and needed a shoulder to cry on. I needed you.

I will always be grateful towards you. I learned how to love by dating you. There were times you made me feel like your whole world. That no matter what I did, you would always be there for me. Maybe I asked too much. Maybe I wasn’t the one who could give you everything you wanted, but someone out there can. I want you to succeed in every aspect of your life. I want you to find someone who you couldn’t stand to be without, where your heart aches leaving them even for a minute. But most of all, I want you to be happy. And hopefully your experience with me will lead you to that.

Love Always,
Your Ex