11 Random Things (July 2017 Wrap Up)

August 1, 2017

Well, it’s August 1. Current mood:


And also:

So you know. Yay. Anyway, a lot has happened this past July! Let’s dive in.

1. Yesterday, I officially moved out of my house. Yes, my first house. Yes, the house I just bought last year. It was definitely bittersweet. I am obviously excited about the next phase of my life (moving to California!) but also, you know, I’m going to miss this place and the people, etc. Standing in that empty living room just really solidified that it’s all happening RIGHT NOW.

2. I meant to post about this when it happened but I was too busy (a) prepping for my move, (b) procrastinating prepping for my move, and (c) convincing myself that procrastinating for my move was actually prepping for my move.

On July 4th, I went to a new beach. I did not love this beach. In fact, I would probably not go back to this beach. (In actual fact, if it were up to me, I would NEVER go back to this beach.)

For one thing, the beach is super rocky, which you can’t tell during high tide so I cut my foot on a rock and almost fell/twisted my ankle every time I went in the water. Once low tide happened, we were astounded to see just how rocky the actual beach was. I mean, it was bad. (Sorry, no pics. I didn’t think to take any.)

Second of all, I totally got jacked by seagulls.

So I was sitting there in my beach chair under the beach umbrella. I had gone in the water and was super excited to eat because, you know, it’s a two-hour drive to the beach and that’s not counting the time spent getting ready to leave the house to go to the beach.

I had made a delightful sandwich: ham, turkey, tomato. I had carefully wrapped it in wax paper and even waited to add the tomatoes to the sandwich when I got there, so it wouldn’t get all soggy.

So there I was with my sandwich getting ready to take a bite when a seagull swooped in from behind me, TOOK A BITE OF MY SANDWICH, and effectively knocked it to the ground. As soon as it fell, my friend yelled, “Toss it!” because Leroy (I named the seagull Leroy) and his friends (one of whom I just know is named Jethro) started swarming around. So I heaved my sandwich away from me, and those jerks COMPLETELY DECIMATED my sandwich.

It was like this, but if they had caught Marlin and torn him to shreds:

So, I basically spent the rest of the day channeling Ross (I set it to start at the point he completely flips out, but you can, of course, watch the whole scene if you want):

When I did attempt to eat later in the day, I kept my food completely wrapped up (thankfully, I had packed enough for the whole day) and took furtive bites out of it while looking over my shoulder.

I also complained to the park ranger about the completely aggressive seagulls and how they were a problem. He told me that they would steal hot dogs out of people’s hands (their favorite food!). He blames the people who actively feed the birds.

I have been to many beaches in my life. I have had a seagull steal my funnel cake before when I left it on my blanket to go get in the water. (It was wrapped up in foil, but that seagull persevered.) But I have never had a seagull steal food RIGHT OUT OF MY HANDS WHILE I WAS EATING IT.

I was completely traumatized. If I had been driving, I probably would have left immediately. But I was not. And so I stayed.

The rest of the day was lovely, to be certain. But that did NOT get it off to an auspicious start.

3. I am also filled with love and gratitude for all of my friends who are helping me with my move. I posted an ask on Facebook for money (because California cost of living >>>>>>> Florida cost of living, and I won’t get my first California paycheck until Sept. 1 [I move next week!]). Because of them, I am able to afford shipping my stuff and setting up some other basic things. Some of my friends even donated airline miles so I can go to my daughter’s orientation. A friend is sending me a bike since I won’t have a car. And! My friend also gave me some miles so my daughter can stay with me between the dead week between when I move out to CA and when she starts at college. I love everybody, basically.

4. Speaking of the move (and what else is there to speak of right now, honestly?): one of the things I am really sad about giving up is my couch. I have the BEST COUCH. It is great. I mean, it is seriously the best couch I have ever owned or sat on. I am bereft at leaving it behind. (My parents will enjoy it now, but still.) I tried to see if any of the local furniture stores had my couch and they did not.

BUT. Through the magic of the internet, I found out that AMAZON HAS MY COUCH. So that is a thing I will be ordering as soon as I am able. Because that couch. It is amazing.

(Oh, except I just saw that the shipping options may not work for me and  there is no way I will be able to get that couch inside by myself. Sadface. I have contacted Amazon so fingers crossed that they can help!)

5. I am exhausted. I woke up this morning excited that moving is over (for now) and also glad that I have until August 2 to bring my stuff to be shipped if I want it to arrive in California the day after I do. But then I realized August 2 is TOMORROW and until isn’t that long at all.

Did I mention that I’m exhausted? And that August 2 is tomorrow? And that means I would have to move all of my boxes again? I may have to delay shipping until I feel up to it. We’ll see.

6. I read two books this month! Well, two and a half. I abandoned one. And Goodreads tells me I am six books behind schedule for meeting my goal for the year. Oh well.

Once and for AllOnce and for All by Sarah Dessen
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

This was fine, but largely forgettable.

Also, I did not like Ambrose much at all or find him that compelling (at one point, a character says that Louna and Ambrose have a ton of chemistry, and I couldn’t think of a single scene that showcased that). In fact, I honestly hoped that Louna was going to end up with the dude (view spoiler), but nope.

On the plus side, now I know how Sarah Dessen would write about a school shooting (which is not a thing I ever wondered about, but still).

View all my reviews


When Dimple Met RishiWhen Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon

I’m on page 222. I may come back to this one, but it’s a lot slower than I want/am in the mood for right now and is frustrating me moreso than delighting me. So. We’ll see how I feel later.

Perfect cover is perfect, tho.

(I forgot to add the date to this. It was July 24, 2017.)

View all my reviews


Gem & DixieGem & Dixie by Sara Zarr
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I have decided that my favorite genre of YA is the one where the teenager(s) realizes she’s in over her head and goes to a trusted adult for help and that adult is actually competent and compassionate and offers the teen a solution she couldn’t see on her own.

This is book is pretty great. Sara Zarr is pretty great. Gem is pretty great. And the ending to this book is completely satisfying.

View all my reviews


7. I am currently reading 1984 by George Orwell.

I am also listening to the New Testament in my car via this audio version of the Bible, which is well-produced and pretty cool. I am in 2 Corinthians now, and during 1 Corinthians, I sent my friend a text that said Paul is a sanctimonious tool. Which. I still stand by. And there is so much more Paul to go. Sooooo much more Paul to go. The good news is that the producers of the audio realize that so break up a lot of the Paul with gospel music, so A+ work there, producers.


Let me just also say that Paul is also the author of every terrible thing I heard in church growing up, so yay for that I guess. And a lot of his teachings do not even line up with things Jesus actually said! For example:

Jesus: “Judge not lest ye be judged.”
Paul: “Judge everybody. And be loud and public about it.”

So, yeah. And, to be clear, I always thought Paul was a tool but hearing it all in one fell swoop is…whew. And the dude they cast to play him is perfect because he sounds like a total blowhard.

THAT SAID, the production quality on the audiobook is awesome. I listened to some of the Old Testament a few years ago but quit after Exodus because I needed a break. Since my copy is from the library, it doesn’t say who reads what, but I did recognize that Levar Burton reads the book of John and Terry Crews reads the book of Acts. Also, Kirk Franklin does the voice of Simon Peter. So! It is fun to listen to. Just, you know. Paul gotta Paul.

8. I also got to that part in season three of Jane the Virgin (no spoilers!). If you watch, you know the part I’m talking about. Current JTV mood:

10. Honestly, I just want to sit on the couch and catch up on Great British Bake Off and So You Think You Can Dance and all the other TV in the world, but these errands aren’t going to run themselves. Unfortunately. And neither will these courses prep themselves. Or these boxes move themselves.

11. I need a lie down.

imwayr 2015 logo

Kidlit version hosted by Kellee Moye of Unleashing Readers and Jen of Teach Mentor Texts; original version hosted by Kathryn at Book Date.



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  1. TizzyMatic

    Seems like ya entire perception of seagulls completely changed that day 😂. Hilarious.

  2. Ally Bean

    Good gravy, what a month for you. I’m impressed that you’re willing to move across country and that you have the ability to do so. I’m going to enjoy learning about what it’s really like to live in CA. Hope that your lie down was all that you needed, and that your move goes smoothly. Pity about that couch, though. Maybe a better one is waiting for you in CA!

  3. Jane the Raincity Librarian

    We absolutely get super aggressive seagulls here. I’ve seen them dive-bomb terrified tourists and grab hot dogs right out of their hands, just as they’re about to take a bite. The nerve!

    • Akilah

      They are such jerks!

  4. heather

    YA where the adults are helpful and know more than teens is my dream too.
    I’ve always said that Paul was the worst thing to ever happen to Christianity. No one has ever believed me. I’m glad you think so too.

    • Akilah

      He is terrible. I understand why his stuff is in the bible, but I really wish it weren’t. Minus the “Love is patient” stuff.

  5. Andi (@estellasrevenge)

    I am feeling TERRIBLE that I am so behind on all your goings-on because yours is one of my very fave blogs. I hope everything is settling down and wonderful!

    • Akilah

      Aw, thanks, Andi! I am behind on every single blog ever so I totally understand. I hope all is well with you!

  6. BossyButBadAss

    Seagulls (and all flying creatures) hold tiny bits of satans soul. They are always on the lookout to drag you into hell. I am not exaggerating. Also, competent adults are my favorite YA inclusion. IDK when YA followed the Married w/ Children path but here we are. Thanks for the Gen and Dixie rec!


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