4.16.2018

5 Interesting TED Talks

This semester I have been working hard to cut out a lot of unimportant things and add in beneficial things instead. Recently I have been trying to listen to a few TED Talks every week either while I am getting ready or cleaning or something!


I love TED Talks because they are usually between 10-20 minutes, so I don't have time to become bored or disinterested. I also love the wide variety of topics. I can find something that I already know a bit about and expand that knowledge, or I can find something I know nothing about and learn a little about it!

An Aphasiologist Has A Stroke 
This was very interesting to me because I have learned about aphasia in many classes and I even have a client with aphasia this semester!

Does Money Make You Mean? 
This talk was so interesting because it shared how people act when they feel wealthy and research that has been done about this.

Do Schools Kill Creativity?
I've always thought that school has taken away a lot of my creativity. And even now when I am on breaks from school I usually feel more inspired to create! So this talk presented some great points and really interested me.

The Real Reason I Traveled to 196 Countries
I enjoy traveling and hearing stories from others who have traveled, so this was a really interesting talk to listen to! I also think that Cassie did a great job speaking and her thoughts were all presented clearly.

The Birth of a Word
Another great one for anyone studying language! Deb Roy taped every moment of his son developing language in his house, and it is so interesting to see how his barely intelligible words turned into a real word.

What is one TED talk that you would recommend? Share in the comments!
xo, Scarlett

4.09.2018

7 Tips For How To Read More

I used to hate reading when I was younger. I thought it was the most boring thing ever and I could not understand why people wanted to read for fun. Now that I have taken classes about linguistics and child language development, I know that was just because I was still learning to read and not yet reading to learn. Once I was able to read to learn new things, I really began to enjoy reading by 4th grade. I can also remember being annoyed in 5th and 6th grade because we only went to the school library once a week and we could only checkout 5 books. Most people checked out 1 or 2, but I always checked out 5 and had those 5 finished by library time the next week.

In high school I stopped reading very often because I just didn't have time between school, volleyball, and blogging. But senior year I got back into it in the spring once I made my 101 in 1001 list! My goal for that list was to read 20 books, because I was probably only reading a few books per year at that point. But I ended up reading 124! So clearly, I found a way to fit reading into my schedule and love it again.



One thing I hear often in real life and from blog readers is "I wish I could read more, but I just don't have the time." I did a post about how to read more a few years back, but I wanted to refresh it and add some more tips since it could be helpful for many people!


Skip social media-
This can be hard to do, because it can be easy to open up an app and then mindlessly scroll for 20 or 30 minutes before you realize how much time you have wasted. One thing that has worked well for me this semester is setting aside 10-15 minutes at the end of the day to check social media. I will also check between classes or if I am waiting somewhere and have nothing to do. But I have tried to cut out mindless scrolling while I could be doing something else!

Be discerning about what books you pick up-
If it doesn't sound interesting when you read the description, then don't think that it will magically become a great book while you read it. Find what genres and authors are your favorite, and stick to those for the most part! If you really are into a book, you will finish it a lot faster.

Don't be afraid to put down a book halfway through-
I used to have the hardest time stopping in the middle of a book even if I hated it. But if I am not liking a book by about 1/3 of the way through, I will put it down and pick up a different book. Occasionally I will come back to the book in a week or two, but most of the time I just ditch it at that point if it wasn't keeping me engaged.

Get rid of Netflix-
*gasp*
Fun fact about me, I don't have a Netflix. Now I am not saying I never will because I am not against Netflix or anything. But right now I know that if I had one I would spend way too much time watching TV because it is just to easy to click next episode. For me, Netflix is more of a social thing, such as watching movies with friends since all of my friends have accounts. Instead of watching an episode or two of your favorite show every day, you could be reading during that time and finishing at least a book a week! Just something to think about...

Bonus tip: Get a cat to keep you company while you read ;)

Get a library card-
Thank goodness for libraries. I pretty much only read on my Kindle these days, but I get all my books on there from my library. Sometimes it is annoying because it can take a few weeks/months to get your hands on a popular book, but it saves so much money and it is so convenient! It also is great because sometimes I haven't read much for a week or two, but then I get a notification that a book I had requested can be borrowed and it makes me so excited to start that book!

Read every night before bed-
I am not always the best at this, but you'd be surprised at how quickly you can get through a book by just reading 10-20 minutes before bed! Usually if I am not reading then I am scrolling through social media or watching videos on my phone instead, so I am trying to add in reading every night instead!

Take advantage of travel time- 
I love airplanes and car rides because it is great uninterrupted reading time. Next time you will be in a car, train, or plane for any length of time, make sure to bring a book or two!

How do you fit reading time into your schedule? Let me know in the comments!
xo, Scarlett

4.02.2018

Recently Reading: March 2018


Another month, another post about the books I have read! Some months I read a few books and love them all. Other months I read a few and don't enjoy most. This month was a mix that included a few I loved and a few I didn't. 


A Stranger in The House- Shari Lapena

"Karen and Tom Krupp are happy—they’ve got a lovely home in upstate New York, they’re practically newlyweds, and they have no kids to interrupt their comfortable life together. But one day, Tom returns home to find Karen has vanished—her car’s gone and it seems she left in a rush. She even left her purse—complete with phone and ID—behind.
There's a knock on the door—the police are there to take Tom to the hospital where his wife has been admitted. She had a car accident, and lost control as she sped through the worst part of town.
The accident has left Karen with a concussion and a few scrapes. Still, she’s mostly okay—except that she can’t remember what she was doing or where she was when she crashed. The cops think her memory loss is highly convenient, and they suspect she was up to no good. 
Karen returns home with Tom, determined to heal and move on with her life. Then she realizes something’s been moved. Something’s not quite right. Someone’s been in her house. And the police won't stop asking questions.
Because in this house, everyone’s a stranger. Everyone has something they’d rather keep hidden. Something they might even kill to keep quiet."


The premise sounds really intriguing, right? I thought so too. But the writing was not great, I really didn't like any of the characters (especially Tom ugh), and an ending that was not great.  I kept hoping it would get better since I liked her other book, The Couple Next Door, so much. But unfortunately it never did. 

Would I recommend? No 



The Perfume Collector by Kathleen Tessaro 

"Newlywed Grace Monroe doesn’t fit anyone’s expectations of a successful 1950s London socialite, least of all her own. When she receives an unexpected inheritance from a complete stranger, Madame Eva d’Orsey, Grace is drawn to uncover the identity of her mysterious benefactor.

Weaving through the decades, from 1920s New York to Monte Carlo, Paris, and London, the story Grace uncovers is that of an extraordinary women who inspired one of Paris’s greatest perfumers. Immortalized in three evocative perfumes, Eva d’Orsey’s history will transform Grace’s life forever, forcing her to choose between the woman she is expected to be and the person she really is.

The Perfume Collector explores the complex and obsessive love between muse and artist, and the tremendous power of memory and scent."


I really enjoyed this book. As I have mentioned before, I enjoy when books go back and forth between time periods, and this book did a great job of that. I also really liked all of the characters in this book, and I felt the eclectic mix added a lot to the story. I also could tell that the author really did her research into the time period and into perfume, so I actually felt like I learned things while reading this novel. There were a few predictable parts, but I was never able to guess the details or reasoning behind it until I got to it in the book! This book reminded me of The Dollhouse by Fiona Davis (which I shared my opinions about here), so if you read and enjoyed that book I think you would enjoy this one too! 

Would I recommend? Yes!



Paris For One by Jojo Moyes

"Nell is twenty-six and has never been to Paris. She's never even been on a romantic weekend away--to anywhere--before. Traveling abroad isn't really her thing. But when Nell's boyfriend fails to show up for their mini-vacation, she has the opportunity to prove everyone--including herself--wrong. Alone in Paris, Nell finds a version of herself she never knew existed: independent and intrepid. Could this turn out to be the most adventurous weekend of her life? Funny, charming, and irresistible, Paris for One is quintessential Jojo Moyes--as are the other stories that round out the collection."

I really enjoyed this novella about Nell, but I have to admit I did not make it through all of the short stories afterwards. I read one or two, then stopped because I felt like they were too short for me to even get into before they were over. 

Would I recommend? Yes, but only the first novella. 



Lillian Boxfish Takes A Walk by Kathleen Rooney

"It’s the last day of 1984, and 85-year-old Lillian Boxfish is about to take a walk.

As she traverses a grittier Manhattan, a city anxious after an attack by a still-at-large subway vigilante, she encounters bartenders, bodega clerks, chauffeurs, security guards, bohemians, criminals, children, parents, and parents-to-be—in surprising moments of generosity and grace. While she strolls, Lillian recalls a long and eventful life that included a brief reign as the highest-paid advertising woman in America—a career cut short by marriage, motherhood, divorce, and a breakdown."


This book had some interesting parts, but also some boring parts so it took me a while to get through. I enjoyed Lillian's memories of working at R.H. Macy's better than her current walking adventure. I also did enjoy hearing about NYC through Lillian's perspective. It was also fun to see how Lillian became friends with almost any stranger she encountered during her walk. Overall, I liked many parts of this book, but I did not love it. 

Would I recommend? Maybe 



Still Alice by Lisa Genova-

"Still Alice is a compelling debut novel about a 50-year-old woman's sudden descent into early onset Alzheimer's disease, written by first-time author Lisa Genova, who holds a Ph. D in neuroscience from Harvard University. 

Alice Howland, happily married with three grown children and a house on the Cape, is a celebrated Harvard professor at the height of her career when she notices a forgetfulness creeping into her life. As confusion starts to cloud her thinking and her memory begins to fail her, she receives a devastating diagnosis: early onset Alzheimer's disease. Fiercely independent, Alice struggles to maintain her lifestyle and live in the moment, even as her sense of self is being stripped away. In turns heartbreaking, inspiring and terrifying, Still Alice captures in remarkable detail what's it's like to literally lose your mind..."


This had been on my to-read list for years, and I had requested it from the library back in December but just now was able to borrow it! This book was also mentioned by a professor in my neuroanatomy class in January, so that made me even more excited to read it. I loved this book and finished it in 3 days because it was so good! But it is also hard to read at times because it is from Alice's perspective and you can see how much the disease is affecting her, and also how oblivious she is at times. Most people also correlate Alzheimer's with old age, so it was interesting to see it happen to someone so young who was still working as a professor. It is a little scary when you think about how if Alice could get it, you also could! This book would also be a great one to read if you know someone with Alzheimer's and want to know what is going on in their mind more.

Would I recommend? Yes!


All The Missing Girls by Megan Miranda

"Megan Miranda’s novel is a nail-biting, breathtaking story about the disappearances of two young women—a decade apart—told in reverse.
It’s been ten years since Nicolette Farrell left her rural hometown after her best friend, Corinne, disappeared from Cooley Ridge without a trace. Back again to tie up loose ends and care for her ailing father, Nic is soon plunged into a shocking drama that reawakens Corinne’s case and breaks open old wounds long since stitched.
The decade-old investigation focused on Nic, her brother Daniel, boyfriend Tyler, and Corinne’s boyfriend Jackson. Since then, only Nic has left Cooley Ridge. Daniel and his wife, Laura, are expecting a baby; Jackson works at the town bar; and Tyler is dating Annaleise Carter, Nic’s younger neighbor and the group’s alibi the night Corinne disappeared. Then, within days of Nic’s return, Annaleise goes missing.
Told backwards—Day 15 to Day 1—from the time Annaleise goes missing, Nic works to unravel the truth about her younger neighbor’s disappearance, revealing shocking truths about her friends, her family, and what really happened to Corinne that night ten years ago."


This was the best thriller I have read in a while! I loved that the story was told backwards, and it was done really well. I did get a little confused once or twice due to this, but overall I really loved the effect it gave to the book. I felt like every chapter I was convinced it was someone else who had committed a crime, which made it a page turner for me since I wanted to figure out what actually happened! 

Would I recommend? YES!


Have you read any good books this month? Share in the comments below!
xo, Scarlett

3.26.2018

April 2018 Bullet Journal Layout

Happy almost April! I am so excited that the temperatures are rising and summer is only a month and a half away. It was a little difficult for me to come up with a theme for April since most of the April layouts I found on Pinterest when looking for inspiration included Easter! But since Easter came so early in April this year, I didn't want my whole month to be Easter themed. So instead I just went with a mash-up of spring things, such as flowers, umbrellas, and rain boots!





If you have followed along, you will know that this is my basic layout that I do every month. It includes everything I want/need, and it still pretty simple! I love how even though I keep pretty much the same layout, it is easy to switch up the designs and customize it every month. 

I am planning on changing it up a bit this summer though, and perhaps changing up my habit tracker! I have been using most of the same habits this entire year, but some of them I feel like I do not even need to track anymore because they have become such a habit. It still is a nice daily reminder to try to accomplish all of those things though!

Do you have a bullet journal? What do you include in your monthly layouts? Share in the comments below!
xo, Scarlett

3.19.2018

Spring 2018 Trend: Bold Gold Earrings (all under $6!)

One trend that has been popping up recently is bold earrings, specifically gold ones! Earrings can be such as fun and easy way to add to an outfit, so I am loving this trend. With trends it is great to pick up affordable pieces instead of spending $50 on a pair of earrings you may end up wearing just once or twice. I compiled a list of my favorites that are all under $6, which means that you can easily try this trend and not feel bad if you decide it isn't you or if it goes out of style in just a few months!

        $4.90                                                                    $3.90   


  

  $3.90                                                                $2.90             

  $3.90                                                             $5.90


And before I end this post, I wanted to leave a few pictures I pulled from Pinterest for inspiration when you are trying to style your new gold earrings! The great thing about this trend is that gold jewelry matches almost anything, so this trend can spice up almost any outfit. 

Gold earrings to complement a laid-back look.. Click to see other arrivals we're obsessing over!

These statement earrings are a unique Seaworthy design of 3 separate solid brass or sterling silver cast pieces connected with two silver handmade headpins and hand soldered sterling silver post. Each

A Week of Outfits: Jenny Gordy 


Will you be trying out the bold gold earring trend this spring? Let me know in the comments!
xo, Scarlett 

3.12.2018

Sit Down With Scarlett: 3.12.18

Time for another quick life update since I am already over a month into second semester! This semester started out really slow for me, which was very welcome considering how crazy January term was for me!


First can we take a moment to appreciate the new growth on my poinsettia plant and the fact that I have kept it alive for over 3 months now?! 

Anyways, I am in 4 classes currently, plus one I am auditing, and a volleyball class that I will start after spring break! As I mentioned in my last SDWS post, the four I am in are Linguistics, Visual Rhetoric, Aural Rehab, and Physics. I have never liked physics, so this is definitely my most challenging class this semester. Thankfully the first test in physics went pretty well, so I am not too concerned. And the other three have been pretty easy so far, so I am not super concerned. Then I am auditing a Monday night class which is Language Disorders Across The Lifespan. Night classes are never fun, but at least I just have to go and listen during this one since I am auditing it and not getting graded! It is interesting for the most part too, and one of the only Speech Pathology classes I am in this semester.

I have also had a completely different experience observing in clinic this semester than last semester, but in the best way! I am observing a different grad student, so it is interesting to see the different ways different grad students do things. And having an elderly client instead of a child has been very different, but I have also really enjoyed it! It is so crazy to think that in just 6 months I will have clients of my own!

I've also been able to be more intentional and spend more time with my friends this semester since I haven't been as busy, which has been so fun! With the Olympics, we have had a few Olympics watch parties. I also attempted watercolor painting one night with a friend, and tried red velvet pancakes for the first time for lunch with a friend! Who knew red velvet pancakes were a thing?! So good!

I can't believe how fast this semester has gone, and that is it my last one before I start grad school in the fall! Do you feel like 2018 has flown by so far? Share in the comments!

xo, Scarlett

3.05.2018

Recently Reading: February 2018



This semester started out pretty slow for me, and we got heavy snows the first two weekends in February! This meant I had a lot of free time while I was stuck in my apartment those weekends, so I took advantage of that time and read a few books that have been on my list for a while!


Tales of the Peculiar by Ransom Riggs
"Wealthy cannibals who dine on the discarded limbs of peculiars. A fork-tongued princess. The origins of the first ymbryne. These are but a few of the truly brilliant stories in Tales of the Peculiar—known to hide information about the peculiar world—first introduced by Ransom Riggs in his Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children series."
I don't usually read fantasy novels, but the Miss Peregrine's Peculiar Children is the series I make the exception for. I really enjoyed the 3 books in the series, so when I saw this book too I thought I would love it! It is full of short stories that don't connect to each other, so I ended up liking some better than others. Overall it was a quick read, but I do have to say I didn't like all of the short stories.


Would I Recommend? Yes, but after reading the other 3 books in the series since they were better!


Dewey's Nine Lives by Vicki Myron
"Dewey's Nine Lives offers nine funny, inspiring, and heartwarming stories about cats--all told from the perspective of "Dewey's Mom," librarian Vicki Myron. The amazing felines in this book include Dewey, of course, whose further never-before-told adventures are shared, and several others who Vicki found out about when their owners reached out to her. Vicki learned, through extensive interviews and story sharing, what made these cats special, and how they fit into Dewey's community of perseverance and love. From a divorced mother in Alaska who saved a drowning kitten on Christmas Eve to a troubled Vietnam veteran whose heart was opened by his long relationship with a rescued cat, these Dewey-style stories will inspire readers to laugh, cry, care, and, most importantly, believe in the magic of animals to touch individual lives."

I did not realize that this book wasn't mainly around Dewey and that there was actually another book written before this one about him. But this book ended up being full of great cat stories, which I obviously loved since I love cats! If you are also a cat lover, you will love these hilarious and poignant stories too.

Would I recommend? Yes! 



Since You've Been Gone Morgan Matson
"It was Sloane who yanked Emily out of her shell and made life 100% interesting. But right before what should have been the most epic summer, Sloane just…disappears. All she leaves behind is a to-do list.

On it, thirteen Sloane-inspired tasks that Emily would normally never try. But what if they could bring her best friend back?

Apple picking at night? Okay, easy enough.

Dance until dawn? Sure. Why not?

Kiss a stranger? Um... 

Emily now has this unexpected summer, and the help of Frank Porter (totally unexpected), to check things off Sloane's list. Who knows what she’ll find?"


This book has been on my to-read list for years, and I finally decided to try it this month! I ended up liking it a lot more than I thought, because it was cute without being cheesy. It also reminded me a lot of Paper Towns (girl goes missing... leaves behind a clues... etc.) but it was still very different at the same time. But if you have read Paper Towns and enjoyed it, you would probably also enjoy this! 

Would I recommend? Yes! 



The Woman In The Window by A.J. Finn 
"Anna Fox lives alone—a recluse in her New York City home, unable to venture outside. She spends her day drinking wine (maybe too much), watching old movies, recalling happier times . . . and spying on her neighbors.

Then the Russells move into the house across the way: a father, a mother, their teenage son. The perfect family. But when Anna, gazing out her window one night, sees something she shouldn’t, her world begins to crumble—and its shocking secrets are laid bare.

What is real? What is imagined? Who is in danger? Who is in control? In this diabolically gripping thriller, no one—and nothing—is what it seems."


This book was full of suspense and a great page turner... I loved it so much I couldn't stop reading and finished in less than 24 hours. I got similar vibes to The Girl On The Train since it was the same premise of a woman witnessing something but she is unreliable and no one knows if she actually did see anything. So this book is anything completely new or groundbreaking. But it was still a very well written thriller and I did not guess the ending at all! The characters were developed perfectly and we also figure out what happened to make Anna stay inside all the time as the book unfolds. I also loved certain parts of it, such as the fact that Anna is a psychologist but has a psychological disorder herself. 

Would I recommend? YES!



A Study in Charlotte by Brittany Cavallaro
"The last thing Jamie Watson wants is a rugby scholarship to Sherringford, a Connecticut prep school just an hour away from his estranged father. But that’s not the only complication: Sherringford is also home to Charlotte Holmes, the famous detective’s great-great-great-granddaughter, who has inherited not only Sherlock’s genius but also his volatile temperament. From everything Jamie has heard about Charlotte, it seems safer to admire her from afar.

From the moment they meet, there’s a tense energy between them, and they seem more destined to be rivals than anything else. But when a Sherringford student dies under suspicious circumstances, ripped straight from the most terrifying of the Sherlock Holmes stories, Jamie can no longer afford to keep his distance. Jamie and Charlotte are being framed for murder, and only Charlotte can clear their names. But danger is mounting and nowhere is safe—and the only people they can trust are each other."


This was another book that I had heard great things about and had been on my list for years but I never actually picked up. But I got about a third of the way through before I decided I just was not enjoying the story at all and gave up on it. I rarely stop reading a book without finishing it too! I didn't connect with any of the characters, the plot just wasn't interesting to me, and it made light of some pretty heavy issues such as drugs and rape. Perhaps part of the reason I did not like it is because I've never watched or read anything to do with Sherlock Holmes, but I feel like I wouldn't have liked this book regardless.

Would I recommend? No, please don't waste an hour or two of your time like I did.


Since You've Been Gone by Anouska Knight
"How do you learn to love again?
In one tragic moment, Holly Jefferson s life as she knows it changes for ever. Now to the external world, at least she s finally getting back on her feet, running her business, Cake. Then she meets Ciaran Argyll.
His rich and charmed life feels a million miles from her own. However, there s more to Ciaran than the superficial world that surrounds him, and he too is wrestling with his own ghosts. Will Holly find the missing ingredient that allows her to live again and embrace an unknown and unexpected tomorrow?"


First off, I just realized I read two books with this title this month! This was another one that I had wanted to read for years and I finally got to it this month. I loved that this was set in England and that Holly owned a cake shop! I also liked how the author portrays Holly's grief well without making it a depressing read. I also really like the happiness and fun that Ciaran brought into Holly's life. Overall, it was a fun and heartwarming romance that would make a good beach read! 

Would I recommend? Yes! 


The House We Grew Up In by Lisa Jewell 
"Meet the picture-perfect Bird family: pragmatic Meg, dreamy Beth, and towheaded twins Rory and Rhys, one an adventurous troublemaker, the other his slighter, more sensitive counterpart. Their father is a sweet, gangly man, but it's their beautiful, free-spirited mother Lorelei who spins at the center. In those early years, Lorelei tries to freeze time by filling their simple brick house with precious mementos. Easter egg foils are her favorite. Craft supplies, too. She hangs all of the children's art, to her husband's chagrin.

Then one Easter weekend, a tragedy so devastating occurs that, almost imperceptibly, it begins to tear the family apart. Years pass and the children have become adults, while Lorelei has become the county's worst hoarder. She has alienated her husband and children and has been living as a recluse. But then something happens that beckons the Bird family back to the house they grew up in—to finally understand the events of that long-ago Easter weekend and to unearth the many secrets hidden within the nooks and crannies of home."


I ended up liking this book more than I originally thought I would. Lisa Jewell did a great job of portraying this complex family and Lorelei's hoarding problem that contributed to tearing the family apart. We get glimpses into different years of their lives as the story unfolds, and we slowly become aware of all of the other secrets that tore this family apart. I loved how smoothly this book still flowed even though it was jumping back and forth throughout decades of their lives. This is the second book I have read by Lisa Jewell, and I will definitely be picking up more in the future. 

Would I recommend? Yes!


What good books have you read recently? I would love to hear your recommendations in the comments! 
xo, Scarlett