Thanks for having a ridiculous offer where it’s cheaper for me to buy a salad and a bottle of water than just a salad on its own. Any excuse to come in and load up on gherkins and ranch dressing is a-okay by me.
Because we each have a Cineworld Unlimited card, Q and I watch a lot of films. We managed to rack up 52 visits to the cinema in 2013, and I watched another 30 films at home on top of that. I have a goal on my Life List to watch 500 new to me movies, so I’m slowly working my way towards that.
I thought I’d do a top 5 round up of my favourite new releases of 2013, just so I can look back on this at some point and think “oh yeah, I really should watch that again…”
This was so good. So good! It was utterly adorable, had plenty of amazing food based puns and was just generally good all round fun. The perfect feel good cartoon, I think.
Along with 75% of the population I have a massive soft spot for the minions, so it’s probably not surprising that this made it onto the list. Add in the fact that there was a nacho had with a lake of guacamole and I was totally sold. (Also, where can I get one of those, please?)
We actually watched this twice and it was just as funny the second time around. I’m growing to love Paul Rudd – I’ve been fond of him since the good old Clueless days but he’s definitely coming into his own now that’s he’s older. Perfect.
It was so hard to pick between these two that I’ve pussied out and declared them joint winners of 2013 – sorry! We saw a preview of Walter Mitty a month before it was released and I just absolutely adored it. Beautiful soundtrack? Check. 35mm film love? Check? Super cute Ben Stiller actually acting and not just being goofy? Check.
In the same way that Eternal Sunshine gave us a new side of Jim Carey, I think Walter Mitty finally allowed Ben Stiller to break away from the cheap comedy characters he’s probably most well known for. An absolutely delight from start to finish and a must, must, must watch.
I loved this film so hard, you guys. So hard. What is it that I love so much about films where comedy players step out of them comfort zones? Eternal Sushine,Walter Mitty and now this, with Steve Carrell playing, well, an asshole to be honest. But so well! Bravo, Steve. Bravo.
This little film was awkward and intense but full of small joyous victories and tiny moments of triumph. It’s also the film that turned Sam Rockwell from an ‘eh’ to a ‘more please’ for me, so yay for that too.
I’m looking forward to what 2014 is going to offer. It’s probably going to be the last year that we keep out Unlimited cards so we’re definitely going to have to make the most of them!
Check! :) I bought the print of this “Seek out the joy” illustration ages ago and have wanted it as a tattoo ever since. Marc is incredibly cool about people getting tattoos of his work so I added it to my Life List thinking it would be fun to check it off one day.
I have seven other tattoos already, so this shouldn’t come as much of a surprise – I find them a bit addictive? The more I get done the more I think of that I’d love to have so I’m sure this won’t be my last one but for now I think it’s definitely my favourite :) (It’s on my upper, inner left arm in case anyone can’t work it out!)
Here’s to the joy, right?
Check :) Aren’t they cute? I won them in a competition on Hayley’s blog so while I technically didn’t buy them I’m still ticking this off. I’m actually hoping that this will be the last year that I wear glasses, bring on the laser eye surgery in 2015!
01. NEW William Gibson – Spook Country
02. RR Judy Blume – Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret
03. RR Judy Blume – Blubber
04. NEW Lauren Weisberger – Last Night at Chateau Marmont
05. RR Judy Blume – Starring Sally J Freedman, as Herself
06. NEW Haruki Murakami – After the Quake
07. RR Toby Litt – Exhibitionism
08. NEW Beverly Cleary – Ramona the Pest
09. NEW Beverly Cleary – Ramona The Brave
10. NEW Beverly Cleary – Ramona & Her Father
11. NEW Beverly Cleary – Ramona & Her Mother
12. NEW Beverly Cleary – Ramona Quimby, Age 8
13. NEW Beverly Cleary – Ramona Forever
14. NEW Beverly Cleary – Ramona’s World
15. NEW Lemony Snicket - A Series of Unfortunate Events: The Austere Academy
16. RR Lemony Snicket – A Series of Unfortunate Events: The Ersatz Elevator
17. NEW Caroline Smailes – Freaks
18. RR Lemony Snicket – A Series of Unfortunate Events: The Vile Village
I read a lot of childrens’ books in December because it was like snuggling under a warm duvet after being outside in the cold. I love childrens’ books, a lot. I thought I’d read the whole Ramona series but actually I think I must have just watched the TV series, because these weren’t familiar to me at all. Throw in some Judy Blume and Lemony Snicket and you’ve got yourself a perfect December in my eyes.
On the adult side, I’d forgotten just how good Exhibitionism was – really hoping that Toby Litt releases a new book soon now! Last Night at Chateau Marmont was complete and utter tosh, definitely not worth reading. After the Quake was the usual gentle Murakami weirdness (which I love) and Freaks missed the mark for me for the most part, but I’ve heard good things about Caroline Smailes so I’m willing to give her another shot. Onto the round up! :)
January: James Smythe - The Explorer
February: There were no standout new books in February. I only gave two 5* ratings and both of those were to re-reads.
March: March was the same. Lots of 3* ratings – nothing to write home about.
September: David Sedaris – The Santaland Diaries
October: John Green – The Fault in Our Stars
November: Ray Bradbury – Fahrenheit 451
December: The whole Ramona series.
Best book overall:
I zipped through this in a couple of hours. It was beautiful and heartfelt, painful and gut wrenching and ultimately a book I think I’ll re-read again and again. Bravo, John Green. Bravo.
God I hated this book. My mother liked it, the rest of our book group liked it but I absolutely couldn’t stand it.
The Time Traveler’s Wife. Always.
Number of books read: 126
Number of new books read: 73
Number of re-reads: 53
Number of pages read: 37,270
5* rated: 20
1* rated: 2
Fiction vs Non-fiction: 125 fiction, 10 non-fiction
Adult vs Childrens’: 77 adult books, 49 kids books
It’s the end of 2013, whoop! This year has been so up and down for so many people I know – we bought a house but lost a friend to cancer, my parents got a divorce but then #ChongCat entered our lives… a real swings and roundabouts year for us. I for one am not sorry to see the back of 2013 to be honest. I think I’m taking more positives from it than negatives (phew) and with that in mind, here’s a quick list of some of my favourite moments from this year :)
See. So many good things! Putting this post together has made me remember so many fun things and spurred me on to make 2014 even better. Fun! In true Sarah spirit I also made some resolutions at the end of last year, and here’s how I got on with them.
I totally did this! I faced my fear of heights by taking a trapeze class. I faced my fear of looking like an idiot (and thus never doing things in case I look like an idiot) by uploading a solo ukulele cover, and by taking a pole dancing class (which was awesome). I faced my fear of flying by getting on another 4 flights (even tho I did freak out a bit when they put us near the emergency exit. Oops).
I did try to push myself to try new things this year, and to push through when I felt like I wanted to turn around and hide under the duvet. I think it’ll always be a work in progress but I’m definitely better :)
I did this too! Every person I told, without exception, made a skeptical face like giving up alcohol was completely unthinkable, but I personally didn’t find it hard at all. I don’t drink a lot anyway so that’s probably part of it (and I don’t enjoy beer or wine), but this was probably the easiest goal of the four to complete.
That being said – I am looking forward to cracking this bad boy open in 2014.
I definitely did this. I’m much more in tune with the things I know will make me happy now (lists, yellow things, avocados, reading) and also happier to tell people if I don’t like doing something. You like bowling? Great! I’m genuinely glad for you but I’m not going to come with you because I really, really hate it.
I tried hard not to put myself in situations where I knew going in that I probably wouldn’t like it, even when there was social pressure to attend. I’m hoping that I managed to pull this off without offending any of my friends but they’d be more qualified to confirm that statement than I am, heh.
Plus, look at that giant list up there! FULL. OF. JOY.
I failed at this. Boo. I did okay for a little while but mostly I was a gossipy gossipy gossip. Oops! Why is this so hard? I feel like gossip is used as social currency almost and that’s definitely something I want to work towards removing from my life. Oh well, you can but try, right?
So. 2013 was (mostly) full of win in my opinion. So what about 2014? Well…
I have a subscription to Treehouse but I haven’t used it for a while. Oops. I’d love to be more confident with coding in a couple of different languages by the end of the year – I might as well get on it since I have the subscription, right? :)
I last completed a 365 in 2008/2009 (although I attempted one in 2006/2007 and 2007/2008, too…). I barely pick up my digital camera any more, so I’ve decided to do a 365 in 2014, with a broader subject matter than the last one, which was a self-portrait 365. Brutal. This time around I’m going to pick a different colour every month and every photo must feature that colour. I think it’ll look awesome at the end of the year! :)
I need to make a change with my diet. I’m forever eating things even tho I know they’re bad for me and then regretting it afterwards, so in 2014 I’m cutting out all wheat related items. Bye bye, pizza! I’ll miss you!
Since I’m already going to be wheat free I figure it’s not going to be too much more of a step to go Paleo for a while. I’d love to do Paleo for the whole year but I know it’s going to be difficult so I’m going to take it month by month and see how I get on!
I spend way more time than I’d like glued to my phone, so in 2014 I’d like to spend more time interacting with people face to face. Putting my phone away during dinner, trying to quit Facebook, no browsing the internet in bed.
PHEW. Who’s excited for 2014? Because I totally, totally am! :D Yay!