book reaction - YOU by Caroline Kepnes

Let me preface this with, this is my first book blog post! And I had the idea, AFTER I’d already finished the book. So please bare with me as I remember what I read. I’m going to try to make this a habit, so my reviews will only get stronger as I keep going! I'm also trying to write this with no spoilers....we'll see how it goes. Let me know if you like this type of post in the comments.

YOU by Caroline Kepnes
Published: 2014
Audible - 11 hours 6min
Genres: Thriller, Suspense, Psychological Fiction

 

NO SPOILERS! I PROMISE

1. Would you listen to this book again?
Yes. Totally. I think it's safe to say the general gist of the story will stick with me, but there are so many well written little moments that will be worth hearing again! 

2. What was your initial reaction to the book? Did it hook you immediately, or take some time to get into?
I loved this book immediately. The voice of the narrator was perfect (literally, because I listened to this book on Audible and Santino Fontana was amazing, but also figuratively). The book gave you a look inside the main characters brain, his streaming consciousness was so truthful & entertaining. 

3. Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?
I did laugh a bit, it was like one loud HA here and there. No crying, it’s not really the crying type of book. 

4. How credible/believable did you find the narrator to be? Did you feel like you got the 'true' story?
I felt like the narrator was believable, there were a few moments I really had to suspend disbelief, but hey, it’s fiction. 

5. What other books did this remind you of?
I can’t think of one to compare this book to! It was a unique read, I really appreciated how fresh this was! It didn’t feel recycled, predictable or generic at all.

6. Have you read/listened to anything else by this author?
Nope, but I will now! Oh, and I just found out YOU has a sequel, Hidden Bodies. I guess that’ll be my next read!

-H

GFTS good for the soule

I started making jewelry back in 2011, my style has evolved from a very beginner look to modern and minimal styled pieces. I'm most comfortable using geometric shapes and minimal color, I typically achieve color and pattern by mixing metals.  And the earrings in the photos below are actually part of my under $15 sale going on at the shop right now!

In the last few weeks, I've been taking a little break from photography to focus time on making some new jewelry styles too. So, I'll be having another photo shoot soon to capture those new pieces! I'm looking forward to styling the jewelry specifically for the holiday and for gift giving images. Typically, I only ever shoot my jewelry on white or a very minimal background, so I'm pumped to try something different! Now I just have to find the perfect props...

-h

food photography class - studio shoot

Yesterday, I took a Food Photography class at the Boston Photography Workshop (BPW). BPW is exactly what I was looking for when we moved here. They have small class sizes, weekends and nights, and a variety of different class subjects!  So far, I've taken a Photo Review session, a Portrait class and now this one.

I've been working on more still life photography, like my outfit flat lays, and just playing with products as the subject. I've never tried food photography, so I thought a class would be a fun way to try it out. This way, I don't have to spend tons of time setting up these shots by myself, HA.

Everything was shot with a tripod. It was uncomfortable working with the tripod at first, it's not something I typically work with. But by the end, I was feeling it more! I'd like to think my next shoot will be as successful as this top shot (my personal fave) But let me know which photo is your favorite! And lemme know what you'd like to see as the subject of my first at home food shoot!

dress for success - indoor shoot

Today's outfit flat lay is inspired by my recent venture into volunteering at Dress for Success Boston. If you're not  familiar with Dress for Success (DFS), here's their mission statement:

The mission of Dress for Success is to empower women to achieve economic independence by providing a network of support, professional attire and the development tools to help women thrive in work and in life.

The main thing DFS is known for, is their boutique and personal shoppers (volunteers) that help dress women for their upcoming job interview or first day of work. Though, DFS is about way more than clothes! After they dress her for the job, they also provide the opportunity to join a Professional Women's Group that holds seminars. On things from personal finance, etiquette and all kinds of amazing valuable life skills and lessons!

I first volunteered at Dress for Success when I lived in Dallas, TX. There, I helped organize clothing in their boutique. Now, in Boston, I'm going to be volunteering as a communications assistant and help them with marketing. I've learned a lot in corporate marketing over the past 7 years and it feels amazing to give back even a fraction of what I've learned to these amazing women! 

A silly obstacle I did not see coming from this volunteer opportunity, their dress code for the volunteers. They have a no denim policy. Ah, no! But I get it, we are DRESSING FOR SUCCESS. The jobs I held for the last 5 years were all a casual dress environment. I have jeans on jeans on jeans. I literally have NO trousers, which I now see, is a problem. I'm also not typically a dress or skirt girl, so I have a few of those, but not a ton. I'm just going to have to flex my closet and see what kind of outfits I can make! I'll be showing what I come up with in future flat lays!

Sweater: J Crew (2016)
Pants: Stretchy Corduroy made by Pilcro at Anthropologie
Shoes: Modern Citizen (2015)

i workout for pizza - indoor shoot

With such an insane year of change, my husband, Chris and I have fallen further away from our health goals. Now that we're finally feeling settled in Boston, we're also trying to settle into healthy habits, so we joined a gym! Right now, I'm trying to make it into the gym 3 times a week. I haven't been a member of a gym in over a year, so starting small will help me stick with it in the long run. If I went in, expecting to do amazing things right off the bat, I'd be disappointed with myself, which is counter productive! I know that as the small steps get easier, I'll get better at pushing myself within my workouts as well. 

So, when it came to choosing an outfit for a flat lay shoot, i went with athletic wear! I think I'll be doing more shoots like this, because joining a gym is an excellent reason to get new workout clothes...right? And in turn, I'll need to photograph those new clothes...obviously.

During the shoot, the only prop I played around with were my bluetooth headphones. Now that I'm looking back, a water bottle would be a cool prop for my next shoot! Have anything else you'd like to see in an athletic wear shoot? Let me know below! Also, pizza will and always be life. 

-H


Leggings: Bargin buy at Marshalls
T-shirt: Target circa 2016
Sneakers: New Balance Fresh Foam Cruz v1