Hellooooo there. Today I have a rather last minute hodgepodge of book recommendations for the last few days of October. Halloween is right around the corner, and though I probably won’t be reading much due to a hectic Saturday schedule, there are certain books that I crave around this time of year. I’ve compiled a list divided roughly by category and I hope it gives you some ideas for Halloween entertainment! And if you’re like me and won’t have time to read this weekend, most of these recommendations easily fit into the November mood, as well.
The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin |Goodreads The Young Elites by Marie Lu |Goodreads
Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater | Goodreads The Madman’s Daughter by Megan Shepherd| Goodreads
Twilight by Stephenie Meyer | Goodreads Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling | Goodreads A Series of Unfortunate Events by Lemony Snicket | Goodreads Percy Jackson and & the Olympians by Rick Riordan | Goodreads
It didn’t really fall into any of the above categories, but I also really love the Fablehaven series by Brandon Mull – it’s children’s/middle-grade fantasy and it’s fantastic. As for me, I’d love to get to Maggie Stiefvater’s The Raven Boys, Kendare Blake’s Anna Dressed in Blood, or Bram Stoker’s Dracula.
October was a whopping good month for me. I was extremely busy the whole month, but for the most part it was a nice kind of busy. There were some bumps in the road- like the PSAT, which I don’t think I did as well on as I could have and a slight scrape against a fellow student’s car in the parking lot- but overall, I had a fantastic month that I want to remember. Scroll to the bottom to see all the pictures!
Spirit Week My school’s spirit week began the first week of October to pump everyone up for the homecoming game. I didn’t go all out (most days I just wore a themed t-shirt) but on Wizard Wednesday I dressed up as Harry Potter. I used red face paint to make a scar on my forehead before school and by 5th period had forgotten it was there. I ended up having to run to the bathroom in the middle of Spanish because it looked like my entire face was bleeding (I had unwittingly smeared the paint all over myself). My friend redrew the scar with eyeliner, but during 7th period I smeared it again and took it off for good. It was a good laugh for everyone witnessing my blunders.
Panther Prowl Panther Prowl is my school’s annual student-led pep rally that occurs the week of the homecoming game at night. Each service club gets to perform a dance before the audience and a panel of judges decides whose was best. The theme this year was “Circus” so my service club, La Sertoa, did a really cool dance with the seniors dressed as dolls (representing my school) and the juniors dressed as clowns (representing the other team’s school). Our music was an awesome mashup of three songs, and we nailed our performance. Our hard work paid off because we won!
One Direction Concert This was definitely one of the highlights of my month year. I bought tickets for me and my friend Kathryn for the Where We Are tour 11 months in advance and had been anticipating the event for what seemed like forever. And oh my goodness, I was not disappointed. The opening act was 5 Seconds of Summer, whose music I was only slightly familiar with. I loved them, and then One Direction came out. And I was blown away. My city was the second-to-last stop of the WWA tour, and Harry’s hair was done up by Lou in french braids and a bun. At first I was annoyed because I love his long hair and turban look, but I quickly grew to love the new do. We were the only show he wore it like that for! I think I will end up writing a separate post about this concert sometime before the year ends- I still have a lot of pictures and videos to go through and compile.
Birthday Parties This month, I celebrated birthdays with three of my friends. My friend Jackie had a beautiful dinner party at a country club. I got salad, steamed and marinated veggies with brown rice, lots of bread, and rose-shaped butter. It was all delicious, and even better was the giant piece of confetti cake that followed. Next, my friend Gracie had a dinner party at a fancy Italian restaurant at the mall. I got mushroom ravioli, and again, lots of bread. Afterwards, we all drove to Yogurtology and got fro-yo and sat outside for over an hour talking and singing along to the music blasting from the store’s speakers. And finally, my friend Jodi had an awesome dinner and movie night at her house. We had salad, chips and homemade queso, and self-decorated cupcakes. And lots of peach tea. Then we watched Failure to Launch, a funny chick-flick that I quite enjoyed. Afterward, those of us who stayed went out to the backyard and sat around a campfire. I am so thankful that I was able to celebrate such special occasions with three great friends.
5SOS After the One Direction concert, I bought the 5SOS album and all of the band’s EP’s. I am now obsessed with their music and- to an extent- them. They are doing a Rock Out with Your Socks Out tour next year, and I bought tickets for myself and Kathryn. It’s next September, but we’re already super pumped for it.
Homecoming Dance My friend Gracie has organized a homecoming group for the past three years, but this was the first year that I could go. My first homecoming was an interesting experience. We started out at Arden’s house to take pictures. Then a limo came and picked us up and took us to dinner at Seasons 52. I ordered the organic baby spinach and caramelized pear salad and it was delicious. A couple from a few tables away sent a waiter over to ask us what we were dressed up for, and when we replied “homecoming,” the woman came over and talked to us. She said that her son went to another high school and that he had a girlfriend of 10 months that she wanted him to break up with. She then showed us a picture of him in his truck (he was cute) and asked if anyone was interested. My friend Katelyn put her number in the mom’s phone. It was one of the funniest experiences I’ve had in a long time, and we all thought it was hilarious. After dinner, the limo drove us to the dance. The dance itself sucked, quite frankly. The music was bad- all rap or spanish love songs. There was a lot of grinding going on around us, but luckily our all-girl group stuck together in a huddle and danced awkwardly for almost two hours. We met up with another group friends during the dance, as well. Afterward, the limo drove us back to Gracie’s house where we had a midnight breakfast. A few girls who didn’t come to the dance showed up and we all hung out and talked for awhile. I ended up leaving at around 2 because I hate sleepovers (I need as much sleep as I can get, honestly), but some girls spent the night. Overall, I’m glad I went. Everything besides the dance was a blast and I had a fun time bonding with the girls in my group.
Book Club The day after homecoming was book club. This month, we read Frankenstein by Mary Shelley. I got my friend Rebekah to come, and we had pumpkin spice tea and mini pumpkin cupcakes while we discussed the book (which neither of us finished until after the meeting).
One Direction Concert Movie I went to see the One Direction Where We Are concert film all by myself because my friend Kathryn had to cancel last minute. It was a $15 ticket, which is pretty pricy. I sat alone among a bunch of 12 year old girls and middle-aged moms. But there was an exclusive interview for most of the first half hour and then the Milan concert footage for another hour or so. It was a great film, very well made. I’m glad I got to see it.
Swimming For high school swimming, we had our last dual meet this month. We also had Western Conference Championships and County Championships. My team won both meets and I qualified for both. Then we had districts at the end of the month, which my team won, and I advanced to regions. My team had a regions dinner the night before Halloween.
New Books My reading has significantly declined since the start of school, I’m sad to say. However, I still purchased two new books this month. The Blood of Olympus released in the beginning of October and it’s the fifth and final installment in the Heroes of Olympus series by Rick Riordan. I also bought the Penguin Clothbound Classics edition of The Count of Monte Cristo (unabridged), which is our November book club selection. I haven’t begun Riordan’s new release yet, but I’ve read around 60 pages of Alexandre Dumas’s famed classic and I’m loving it so far.
Steal My Girl Music Video The music video for One Direction’s newest single released! It’s nonsensical like the band’s music videos always are, but it’s highly entertaining. The boys announced that we, the fans, had broken the 24-hour VEVO record, but that turned out to be a mistake. Unfortunately, we did not break the record, but we still got to see an awesome music video to an awesome song.
Grandparents My mom’s parents returned to their Florida home after being in their North Carolina retirement community for the summer. We visited them the day after my mom’s birthday and caught up, ate lunch and dessert, and played charades. It was great to see them again after so long.
1989 Taylor Swift’s new album released on October 27th! It is her fifth album, and it’s labeled as all pop. I went to Target straight after school Monday and bought the deluxe edition. I’ve had it on repeat in my car all week, and listened to it every chance I get. I think this is definitely her best album yet. I love her new sound and I’m happy her songs are still lyrically based. I love every single song- no surprise- but my favorites are Blank Space, Style, All You Had To Do Was Stay, and Wonderland. I think I will post a separate album review sometime soon.
Hockey I went to two Lightning games this month. In the game versus the New Jersey Devils, the Lightning lost 2-1, but in the game versus the Arizona Coyotes, the Bolts won 7-3. I went with my dad to the first game, but brought my friend Korina along to the second one. My dad and brother, Matthew, sat in our season seats while Korina and I sat in the rowdy 3rd level section. It was an interesting change in venue, but we moved down to sit with my family after the 1st period. I think I might have sparked a slight interest in hockey in Korina, although she admitted it was mostly the “hot players” that grabbed her attention, not the game itself. I also watched the Lightning games I didn’t go to on television, and also watched a few other hockey games on TV here and there. The Lightning season home opener was at the beginning of the month (I stupidly gave up my tickets to babysit), and the puck officially dropped on the 2014-2015 NHL season.
New Clothes I purchased some new clothes last month in preparation for the some of the upcoming events I had in October, but this month I bought a few new things too. I bought a necklace for homecoming at a local boutique and I bought three sweatshirts from an amazing Etsy shop: a Harry Styles tattoo sweatshirt, a Louis Tomlinson tattoo sweatshirt, and a “lol ur not harry styles” sweatshirt. I’m in love. I also bought a sweater on sale from Banana Republic that looks very similar to the one the boys wore in the You & I music video. Can you sense a theme to my purchases?
Friends Due to the various organized social gatherings I attended this month, I spent a lot of quality time with friends. I also did spontaneous individual things- like making a fro-yo run at 9:30 pm with Korina (during which she got a flat tire) and having deep talks on the floor of my room afterward. This was a month of long phone conversations and nighttime drives. I made a Peter Pan costume for my friend Peter for Halloween. We went shopping earlier in the month to get the materials I would need, and then did a fitting (and mini photo shoot) on Halloween. I cut the t-shirt, measured, cut, and braided the belt, and cut and sewed the hat all by myself. I ordered tights online and picked out his shoes. I was very pleased with the way it turned out, and am proud of myself for doing it.
Halloween I haven’t celebrated Halloween since 8th grade. It’s never been a holiday I’m particularly fond of, but this year a number of factors combined to make it a great night. This year, Halloween was on a Friday, I had a brilliant costume idea, and I had plans to celebrate. I dressed up as Harry Styles. I wore my new tattoo sweatshirt, skinny jeans, black ankle boots, and Korina did my hair in two side french braids with a bun in the middle. I went to Korina’s house, along with my friend Ally (who dressed as Lorde) and Korina’s friend Paula (who dressed as batman). We got thai/sushi takeout from one of my favorite restaurants and spent the night passing out candy, taking pictures, and running around the house like idiots. I got us locked out of the house, but thankfully Korina’s parents came home to let us in. We were going to watch Harry Potter movies, but I had a curfew due to regions being the next day so I left around 11. It was a fun time, and we had lots of laughs.
Also, this didn’t fit into any of the above categories, but my American Studies classes did mock trials the day before Halloween and I was the judge! Gaveling.