what i’ve been watching recently #7

O da minha

Hello, friends!

I have to admit: the past few weeks have been rather slow and I only opened up NETFLIX to watch docummentaries and reality shows. I am afraid this won’t be the most entertaining of the posts, but I highly recommend all of these titles if they interest you!

DOWN TO EARTH

rebecca Tumblr posts - Tumbral.com

Granted: I only started watching this show because of Zac Efron, but I found myself completely interested and finished this in a weekend.

This is a documentary series, where in each episode, Zac and his friend, Darin Olien, visit a different country, exploring their initiatives on sustainability and other eco-friendly alternatives. It’s not the most original thing in the world, but I really liked their approach, as someone who’s honestly rather ignorant and uninstered in these topics – it didn’t feel preachy at all and was really respectful.

My favorite episode was the one in Costa Rica, where they visit a small village in the forest. I loved seeing the school they set up and how they were educating children there. Since this is the field I currently study about, it was really fascinating.

But I feel like all episodes were interesting and sparked a great discussion. Even if you’re not interested in the theme and only care about Zac Efron’s looks, I’d still recommend it, lol.

INDIAN MATCHMAKING

Cheers Indian Matchmaking GIF - Cheers IndianMatchmaking Toast ...

NETFLIX: keep the dating reality shows coming. Please.

As the name suggests, this one is going to explore the matchmaking practice, common in Indian culture. While I do understand this show was controversial among the community, I thought it was really interesting for shedding light on what matchmaking really is. Like, even my sister, who’s a very well-educated girl, thought that arranged marriage was still a “forced” practice, when, in reality, we get to see a lot of people who seek out a matchmaker as they’re not being successful dating through other routes. (We still see some people who are being pressured into marrying, though).

I really liked some stories (Vyasar and Nadia deserve EVERYTHING) and found all of them to be interesting, as the show really comitted itself to show people from different backgrounds who were looking for different things.

I still think it’s worth-watching, but definitely make sure to read “own-voices reviews” before or after watching it as I feel like they’re very important to shape your view on the show.

THE SPEED CUBERS

The Speed Cubers | Netflix Official Site

Y’ALL. This documentary. Honestly.

I did not expect to cry this much with a 40min documentary but it was the most wholesome thing I’ve ever watched. I don’t know if it was simply because I was on my period, though I’ve rewatched since, and it still brought me to tears.

Yes, this is a documentary about speed Rubik’s cubing. We follow mostly two people: Feliks Zemdegs – Melbourne-raised and who broke a lot of records while still a kid; and Max Park – a 17-year-old who’s been breaking Felix’s records since 2016.

Max is autistic and it was so interesting seeing the way his victories are not only about the records he breaks, but also about the small ways the competitions and the speed-cubing community allow him to improve his social skills.

It was so wholesome seeing the friendship between Feliks and Max – albeit rivals, Feliks is still Max’s idol and they have such a strong and beautiful bond. Honestly, this documentary made me so happy and emotional. Pleaseeeee go watch it.

LOVE ON THE SPECTRUM

Hug Love On The Spectrum GIF - Hug LoveOnTheSpectrum Netflix ...

Yes, yet again, another dating reality show. Is it noticeable already I really like them? Oh ok.

Anyway, this one is Australian and we follow people in the autism spectrum as they go on dates and try to find “the one”. Like Indian Matchmaking, I do recommend people who watch this show take some time to see the autistic community’s response to it, as it’s always important to take notice that what we see in a show like this, even if we’re following a number of different people’s experiences, can not represent the entire community and it’ll still have its faults.

I found it to be really interesting: dating is already a challenging thing, so it was nice seeing the different ways neurodiverse people interact, express affection, make small talk, etc.

As a neurotypical person, I admit: it was awkward and embarassing at times. But whenever I felt like that, I remembered myself that social skills are not easy for everyone, and that’s OKAY! I think we’re most likely to judge what we don’t understand/are not used to, so it was a learning experience as well.

I am currently watching some K-Dramas and I’ll probably talk about them in my next recap, but for now, I just wanted to recommend these titles. Thank you for reading!

 

monthly wrap up: july, ’20

monthlywrapupnovo

Hello, friends!

I realized I didn’t properly do a recap for June, because I ended up doing my wrap-up for the Olympic Games Readathon. Not that you missed much in my life because June was as eventful as all the months prior to that, BUT the beginning of the month was quite stressful, as my dad tested positive for covid-19 and we had to quarantine him at home. Thankfully, my mom, my sister and I all tested negative, but it was stressful nonetheless because I had to share a room with my sister as my mom slept in my room. My extended family has also been having some healthy issues and it’s just *a lot*.

But things perked up in July and the past month ended up being one of the best ones. Things are opening back up in my state, but getting worse in the rest of Brazil. I still don’t feel safe leaving the house and I wonder when I will start to feel, though.

HIGHLIGHTS

  • I finally watched Hamilton! Wow, I know, I’m super late to the game, but now that the whole musical is on Disney+ (and everywhere else in the internet ofc), my sister finally convinced me to watch it and it’s great! I loved the soundtrack and the characters (Burr is my favorite, btw). I know it’s kinda of a controversial musical, but personally, I was able to very distinctly interpret it as a very well done work of fiction.
  • I completed my Goodreads Reading Challenge. My goal for this year was to read 50 books and I’m really surprised that I was able to achieve if half way through the year. I won’t be changing it on Goodreads, but I have another lowkey goal which is to read 80 books by the end of 2020. I don’t know if I’ll make it, considering the only reason why I read so much this year was because of lockdown, but I’ll be trying my best!

One Direction also celebrated their 10th anniversary, which was emotional albeit underwhelming and not the reunion I expected, but oh well. Taylor Swift also released an entire new album, that I have yet to *fall in love with*, but I really like it so far, it’s just not my favorite yet.

WHAT I READ

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★★★★☆

While I definitely don’t think Let’s Call It a Doomsday will be for everyone, I was so invested in this book and this story! The representation is awesome: we follow Ellis, a questioning bisexual Mormon girl with anxiety, who’s fixated on the idea of the apocalypse. She meets Hannah, who’s a lesbian, and within Hannah’s friend group, we also have Tal, who was also bisexual and half-Brazilian (Katie Henry always comes through with the South-American rep). I did not love how the book ended without much of a conclusion of Ellis’ relationship with her family, but I adored the intense ride that we went through and loved the characters’ relationships, albeit incredibly flawed.

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★★★★☆

I think I may have finally found my favorite adult romance book: The Bromance Book Club was such a great read! I loved most of it, especially the interactions between the members of the Book Club. I liked both Gavin and Thea as characters and appreciated how the author made sure to highlight how both of the characters needed to grow and improve. However, I did not love Liv’s character, as it didn’t sit right with me how she’d be projecting her own insecurities and unpacked trauma into Gavin and Thea’s relationship and I felt like the book dragged a bit, especially towards the end, but it made me super happy and it’s one I recommend if you like the failed marriage trope.

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★★★☆☆

I really wanted to read The Sound of Stars, even though sci-fi is not my genre, mostly because the idea of a book that highlighted the importance of music and stories in changing the world felt like something I’d love. I indeed really liked the premise, the characters – both of their narrations felt equally engaging – and I feel like the book had both a really strong start and finish. But the middle dragged a bit, it felt repetitive and the writing made me feel like I was mostly being *told* these characters’ feelings, rather than being *shown*. Because of that, I could not 100% buy into their development individually or relationship.

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★★★★☆

Loveless was one of my most anticipated releases of the year and I plan on writing an entire review on it. This book follows Georgia, a freshman at university, who’s figuring out her identity as an aro-ace girl. I related *a lot* to Georgia’s character and there were moments where this book brought me to tears. I loved the highlight on the importance of platonic relationships and the supportive queer community around our protagonist. However, I did not like some of the side characters’ decisions and there were moments where I felt like we were mostly watching the rest of the cast, rather than Georgia, even though she was our main.

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★★★★☆

The Devouring Gray was for sure a pleasant surprise. Set in a small town, this YA fantasy novel had a lot of mixed reviews and I didn’t think I was going to like it as much, but I was proven to be wrong. Diversity-wise, this book has a lot of bisexual characters, which was really great to see. I was very invested in all the characters and their relationships, the mystery kept me intrigued and I really appreciated the setting. I am actually very much looking forward to continue on and pick up the second book, especially because I need more conclusion on the romance (!!!!).

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★★★★☆

10 Things I Hate About Pinky was another one of my most anticipated releases of the year, and I am not even surprised by how much I adored it. While it did disappoint me a little bit that Samir was more confident than I anticipated, from what he’d seen in the previous book (I was more excited to see Pinky being the straight-forward one in the relationship, not Samir), I still loved the angst and sexual tension and how well Sandhya Menon also adressed topics such as family relationships and social activism. This book was such an entertaining fake-dating summer romance, I really had a great time.

MONTHLY PLAYLIST

If you got the reference for my playlist title, let me know! There are a lot of old bops in here and definitely some One Direction too, so you could tell I was in a mood. Lauren also inspired me to listen to the Lightning Thief musical and I am so thankful! I loved it, and I really want to get more into musicals!

LOOKING FORWARD

The next university semester will be online, so August will probably look exactly like the same months until now. But Lobizona and Darius the Great Deserves Better are coming out in the next weeks, so at least there’s that to look forward to!

How was your July? Have you guys listened to Folklore and what are your thoughts on it? And if you’re a Hamilton fan, what’s your favorite song/character? Let me know in the comments!

 

what i’ve been watching recently #6

O da minha

Hello, friends!

Today’s post is going to be a mixed one. In the past few weeks, I watched some great things, and some very bad ones. I actually wondered if I should post this, as it would be more negative than I typically write my posts, but ultimately decided to do it, as it could potentially help other people out there on what to avoid on NETFLIX.

DRUCK (S1~S4)

druck rewatch party | Explore Tumblr Posts and Blogs | Tumgir

I watch way too many SKAM remakes for my own good and I am aware.

I thought I’d never watch DRUCK, because I’d already watched their season 2 at one point and it was really disappointing. But I am really glad I ended up going back and giving it a second chance, because the other seasons are actually really good.

I still stand by the fact S2 is a disappointment because I really disliked Mia as a main, as well as her dynamic with Alexander and Kiki. But I surprisingly adored Hanna as a protagonist in S1, even Matteo who I thought I’d hate in S3 turned out to be a lovely character, and I will never shut up about Amira’s season because it’s literally art.

The side characters are also lovely and this may be the first Eva/Jonas relationship I actually rooted for from the beginning, so yeah, we stan.

LOVE ALARM

love alarm | Tumblr

I’ve been meaning to get back into Korean dramas, as the last one I watched was in early 2018. I don’t know why I fell out of love with them for a while, but I really wanted to get back, so I decided to watch this one on Netflix because the trailer caught my attention and it was really short, so I felt like it would be the best way to ease myself back.

I was very wrong, lol.

This drama is just a compilation of all the tropes I hate in Korean dramas: inconclusive endings, rich guy/poor girl, bullies, main character with no agency, and dudes that have to save her constantly.

It was also even worse because the motivations are so unclear. I still have no idea why the characters made certain decisions, so I couldn’t buy none of the plot for that reason. I also hated how irresponsibly they dealt with topics such suicide and homophobia.

I am pretty mad about this one and if you’re looking into K-dramas to watch, I’d definitely say run from this one!

THE POLITICIAN (S2)

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I was looking forward to this season since the first one ended and I can’t believe how quickly we got it. I like the fact that this season has as much of the extravagance and over-the-top-ness of the first one, while still addressing a bunch of interesting and relevant topics.

The main conflict of this season was the generation conflict, and I liked their approach a lot. Even the voter’s episode, which I didn’t like as much in S1, was so well done in S2 and I think shows well how politicians are so far from the standards we tend to hold them to.

Still, I understand people who found this season disappointing, as there are *definitely not enough gays* and some of the character’s relationships and dynamics were pretty much all over the place. I loved the ending, though, and the acting is still gold.

CONTROL Z

control z | Tumblr

Trigger warnings: transphobia, graphic violence, bullying, public outing, self-harm

Everytime I think NETFLIX has learned something on how to *responsibly* address sensitive issues, they prove me wrong. This was 10x worse than anything they could’ve possibly done in Thirteen Reasons Why.

This show has a very cliché premise, similar to Pretty Little Liars, where an anonymous social media account is threatening the students with their secrets. Our main character is trying to investigate who could be behind the account.

The problem is that they also try to address bullying, transphobia and self-harm, but absolutely irresponsibly. All the discussions are surface-level, they serve literally for no purpose other than to shock the audience and create more drama. I mean, considering that the whole main conflict is triggered by a public outing – an incredibly traumatic event that serves no other purpose in the narrative but to perpetuate the drama -, I shouldn’t have been surprised by the outcome.

This also had some of the most graphically violent scenes I’ve watched in a while, and while it’s not targeted for teenagers necessarily, the fact it’s set in a high school makes me feel like a lot of teenagers will want to watch it and it can be such a harmful content.

Sorry that I ended up ranting so much on this one! If you’ve watched any of these shows, let’s discuss in the comments. And if you have actual good K-DRAMAS to recommend, also please let me know!

monthly wrap up: may, ’20

monthlywrapupnovo

Hello, friends!

May was probably one of the hardest months of the year. Quarantine depression is hitting STRONG around here and life is not even close to getting back to normal where I live. Our social isolation rates have been below 50% for weeks, the curve is showing no signs of slowing down, we’ll be reaching the absolute saturation of the health care system is less than 2 weeks now and the politics are talking about re-opening the city already! We love it here! *-*

Also, the news of the past few days have been terrible and incredibly triggering. I’ve pretty much stayed away from social media because some of the news are just horrifying. Regardless, I’ve definitely been trying my best to educate myself and helping as I can and I hope y’all are doing the same. 💛

HIGHLIGHTS

  1. I’ve started my yearly re-watch of Gossip Girl. I feel like watching Gossip Girl at least once a year has become a tradition for me. It is one of my favorite shows of all times and I decided to start in mid season two this time around, since I’ve already watched S1 sooo many times. It makes me happy to revisit my favorite characters and storylines, even if they’re all a mess.
  2. It’s finally getting coldddd! You know your life has had nothing nice to documment when one of your highlights is about the weather. But fall has finally hit and I’m currently writing this post wearing a hoodie under my blanket. It’s been delightful, as I love the cold! It is a bit depressing though, because I’ve always associated the cold with festas juninas (popular street celebrations in Brazil that happen around June and July, aka winter), but because of corona we won’t have any this year. ):

BOOKS I READ

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★★★★☆

The first book I finished was Not So Pure and Simple, by Lamar Gilles which dedicates itself to discuss double-standards, toxic masculinity and sex education. Our protagonist can be incredibly unlikeable, as he has a lot of sexist ideas, but it was necessary in order to tell such story and growth. This book was still really funny and intertwined well the use of social media and social issues. Not much happens, that’s true, but all the discussions are relevant AF so it compensates.

 

 

5
★★★★★

Continuing my re-read of Harry Potter, I picked up the third one. The story is definitely becoming more intense and I felt much closer to the characters, especially to Harry. I love learning more about the marauders and the relationships between Harry/Remus and Harry/Sirius warmed my heart so much. Hermione is such a badass in this book as well. It was a really great time.

 

 

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★★☆☆☆

The Brightsiders is my second Jen Wilde book and centers around Emmy, drummer of the band The Brightsiders, who’s the best definition of bisexual chaos. She’s trying to repair her not-so-good reputation and making a bunch of other mistakes in the process. This book is very diverse, as I expected, with bisexual rep, Korean-American rep, gender queer rep, etc. I liked seeing the representation and, honestly, Alfie might be my new book boyfriend. He was SO swoony and attractive and awesome. But this book actually frustrated me more than anything – it felt repetitive, juvenile and the writing consisted of as many pop culture references you can make in 15 seconds.

 

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★★★☆☆

Yes, I will be reading an incredibly diverse & progressive book in one second and then picking up Twilight in the other. With the announcement of Midnight Sun, Twilight has been back on my radar. I even got back on twitter just so I could comment on it, lol. This book is far from perfect, but damn it was entertaining. I still find it to be way too slow and descriptive, but the banter is A+. Also, book Edward > movie Edward.

 

 

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★★★☆☆

The main reason why I picked up Tash Hearts Tolstoy was because of the ace rep, but there are a lot of other great elements about this book! I really enjoyed how realistic it was when it comes to the ~internet things~, the writing was really engaging too. and I loved the focus on friendship. However, I felt like the ending took a really unnecessary overdramatic turn, none of the characters felt particularly memorable (with the exception of Paul) and it annoyed me SO MUCH how this girl acted like her parents having a baby was the worst thing to ever happen to her.

 

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★★★☆☆

The Dangerous Art of Blending In was an interesting ride. Major trigger warnings in this one for domestic abuse (physical and emotional), homophobic slurs, public outing and homophobia. There were elements I really did not like in this story: first, the fact all female characters were decipted as villains was pretty bad and the fact there was no *actual* discussion on what’s helpful for someone who could be going through a domestic abuse situation made me frustrated. I did like the romance, though, and it was a very layered novel, but definitely not perfect. The fact it’s own voices also means a lot!

 

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★★★★☆

To Have and To Hoax is a really fun historical romance about a failed marriage. It was my first time reading historical romance and I really liked it, even if the writing style was hard to get through at first. I think there’s a lot of potential for this to be a series, as the side characters and side relationships were all really interesting. However, I do not think this book will be for everyone, as it is deeply about miscommunication and the characters making every thing too much of a drama than it actually needed to be. I still liked it a ton and would definitely consider reading more from this author!

 

LOOKING FORWARD

I have no idea what awaits in June. Maybe, things will really get back to normal. Or maybe things will simply get even worse! For now, I’m trying to keep a positive mindset and focus on what I know will happen – the Olympic Games readathon that I am already prepared for – and the return of Premier League, which will allow football to distract me, at last.

How was May for you? Any new songs/artists you recommend? What was the best book you read this month? Let’s talk!

what i’ve been watching recently #5

O da minha

Hello, friends!

Even though quarantine has hit, I’ve actually not been watching a lot of new things. I’ve been mostly binge-watching D-COMS and rewatching favorites. But I gathered a small pile of things I’ve watched that I had a lot of thoughts on.

I AM NOT OKAY WITH THIS (S1)

ianowt mine | Tumblr

Oh, friends, this show.

I don’t know what it is about Netflix lately where I genuinely don’t know if the shows are set in the 80s or 2019 until someone picks up a cellphone. The 80s aesthetic is so overwhelming is the weirdest thing. Every character also has to sound and look “quirky” and it gets pretty old pretty fast.

There is an entire monologue by one of the characters as he watches a highschool football game and he keeps saying how “it’s a tragedy, because all of these people will be miserable in five years time”. That’s an awful thing to say, period, but the fact they really think they’re better and special snowflakes because they only watch VHS and don’t like sports? Ew. Imagine being this far up your own ass.

It got a little bit better at the end, I think, because after spending enough time with these characters, they stopped sounding so annoying. But I feel like season two will have a very different feel than this one, so I’m not sure if I’m continuing on with this series.

NEVER HAVE I EVER (S1)

never have i ever | Tumblr

As soon as I first watched the trailer of Never Have I Ever, I knew it was going to be amazing and I am so happy I wasn’t let down.

This show is not perfect, by any means. Even though it is incredibly diverse, the only fat character is still your stereotypical disgusting and dumb fat boy. The acting could definitely see some improvement and it will probably sound cringey in 3 years time, because a lot of the jokes are timely, but I still had such a great time binge-watching this.

It is refreshing to watch a show where the white characters are the minority. Where we can see a character going to therapy without that being shown as pointless. Where there are relevant discussions, but also hilarious dialogues. Where all the characters have interesting arcs, backgrounds and are not just cardboard cutouts waiting for our main character’s break through.

If you’re a fan of On My Block, there’s no way you won’t enjoy this, honestly. It had everything you could want – laughs, tears and definitely some cringe moments – and it’s diverse AF.

LOVE 101 (S1)

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This is a Turkish drama and I watched the trailer before it came out and it gave me insane Elite vibes. Since Elite is my favorite Netflix Original, I knew I needed to watch this one. I will say, though, it has nothing to do with Elite, but it was still pretty fun.

This is set in the 90s and centers around this group of troublemakers who are about to be expelled. For that, the board decision has to be unanimous, but one teacher stands up for them. This one teacher is about to move away, though, so the group decides to team up and find her a boyfriend, so she stays and they’re not kicked out.

In the process, they end up getting closer and realizing they have a lot more in common than they think. This one differs from Elite because it’s just a lot more PG-13 and doesn’t discuss as many taboo topics, but it still has some depth to it and the characters are definitely multi-layered and captivating.

I’d say there is a little bit of romanticization of mental ilness and abusive behaviors, but nothing major that I felt like took completely from the story. The ending is very inconclusive, though, and I’ll literally *die* if there’s no season 2.

What is your most recently watched show? Did you watch Never Have I Ever? If so, what are your thoughts on it? What’s your favorite show from your country? Recommend me in the comments!

 

monthly wrap up: march, ’20

monthlywrapupnovo

Hello, friends!

I hope y’all have survived March well. I know the news worldwide have been pretty scary and I hope you are all staying healthy and safe. My month was pretty uneventful, because of everything that’s going on, but I read a lot of great books for Women’s History Month, so at least there’s that!

HIGHLIGHTS

  • I got tickets to watch Niall Horan in November! Niall Horan was my favorite One Direction member and I absolutely love his solo work too. He released his new album, Heartbreak Weather, this March, and I am so glad I loved it just as much as I loved his debut. It will be my second time watching him live and I’m really excited to see some of my favorite songs being performed live.
  • And I quarantined – much like everyone else. Corona virus hit Brazil as well, and because of that, classes were cancelled and I didn’t have to work either. Even though I’m somewhat used to staying home, it’s pretty annoying having to stay indoors for so long, especially because the weather is absolutely PERFECT. I won’t get much into it, because I feel like everyone else in the world is doing it, but yes this virus absolutely sucks and I’m lowkey terrified but pretending to be fine.

BOOKS I READ

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★★★★☆

I started the month with a new release I absolutely adored. Only Mostly Devastated was the gay Grease I never knew I needed. I loved everything about it, but what got my attention the most was the incredibly accurate representation of teenagers. The dialogues felt so real, the characterization, just everything. I related quite a bit to Oliver, our protagonist. It was just a very *giddy and adorable* read and I loved it.

 

 

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★★★☆☆

Saints and Misfits was quite a weird read. I liked our protagonist, I liked the themes, I loved how the book was unapologetically brown and Muslim. I was sort of lost sometimes, but I appreciated that a lot. However, I hated the side characters; and I feel like the writing style was choppy and difficult to connect with at times. It focused focused too much on the plot, and not enough on the characters’ emotions. I still enjoyed it enough for the themes it discussed, especially sexual assault and religion.

 

 

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I Was Born For This is my second Alice Oseman and, well, it didn’t go how I expected. I related so much to the main characters’ obsession with The Ark; it reminded me so much of my own obsession with One Direction from back in the day. And, at the beginning, I was really excited with the idea of this book being very fandom-positive. But I feel like every chapter was there to remind me over and over again, about the ugly parts of fandom – the stalking, the disrespect, the shipping -, that even though I am not a part of, I’m still uncomfortable to be indirectly attached to. In the end, it was making me feel so fucking bad about myself, like being a fan is being a part of an awful community, dedicating your life to fandom is being naive and irresponsible, and that my feelings are not valid because celebrities are constantly lying to their fans. So I DNF-ed it, because I don’t need this kind of negativity in my life at the moment.

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★★★★☆

I picked up another Brigid Kemmerer this month and I may be obsessed with this author. This book is your classic fantasy, with a badass female character, and a reserved but deeply passionate male character. It had a lot more political intrigue than I anticipated, as I expected more romance from a Beauty and the Beast re-telling. I liked the characters enough, and even though I found the story to be a bit dramatic and predictable at times, it was still a solid read.

 

 

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★★☆☆☆

I also finally picked up Loveboat, Taipei and found it to be quite overdramatic, so I was eyerolling through most of it. While I expected this book to follow reckless teenagers, it was a bit too cliché at times and I found myself not carrying for any of the characters. It also rushed through themes I wish had been more deeply explored. I couldn’t really connect with our main character and felt like most of her actions were written as “reactions” to others rather than like she was actually taking responsibility for it. (Also lowkey pictured all the guys in this book as those Asian e-boys on TikTok and that alone made me want to punch every single one of them).

 

 

MONTHLY PLAYLIST

This playlist is the most chaotic playlist I’ve ever done in my whole life. This is what being inside my brain looks like, y’all: there are indie songs, pop songs, Nelly Furtado and The Beatles. So it’s definitely not one for everyone, but I had a lot of fun!

LOOKING FORWARD

I’m expecting April a lot, mostly in terms of reading, as Magical Readathon is happening and I’ll be taking part ofc! That’s pretty much the only thing I know for sure will be happening in April, as everything else has been put on hold for the past few weeks and I still don’t know where we’re heading next. Oh, so much for planning, lol.

How has been quarantine for you? Did you read any amazing books this month by female authors I should know about? Let’s chat in the comments!

 

monthly wrap up: february, ’20

monthlywrapupnovo

Hello, friends!

February is now over, which means Carnaval is over. In case y’all are not familiar with it: it’s a five-day holiday in Brazil, that involves a lot of partying – or for an introvert like me, a lot of Netflix. March will have no holidays, so I am not exactly looking forward to it, lol.

HIGHLIGHTS

February was pretty uneventful for me, except for the fact I now have an *actual* part time job! I already have sort of a side job, where I am monitoring for my old high school teachers – basically checking out students’ work -, but now I’m actually working at a kindergarten, helping out with kids. I’ve always wanted to do that, but it’s been an interesting experience. It’s not entirely what I expected – and not in a bad way. It just involves a lot more responsability than I thought at first. But it’s also been rewarding, and I’m looking forward to it more and more.

BOOKS I READ

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★★★☆☆

I really enjoy contemporaries with sprinkles of magic and fantastical elements, so I was really intrigued by this one’s premise. Basically: Mila is convinced her best friend was murdered, while everyone else in town is calling it a suicide. So Mila decides to do what anyone else would – bring her best friend back from the dead to get her answers. Except she ends up bringing other two girls as well and chaos ensues. As much as I liked the rep in this – Mila was a Latinx fat girl -, I felt like the relationships were particularly surface-level and the resolution of the mystery rather underwhelming.

 

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★★★★☆

More often that not, the sole existence of Percy Jackson is enough to make me smile – even if just his fictional existence. This book is basically Percy counting all the original greek myths, with his characteristic sarcasm and humor. I mostly loved this because of how authentic the voice was, but I was also really intrigued by some of the myths, and especially how Rick Riordan transported them to the 21st century, highlighting some of the very *questionable* choices made by the gods – such as the amount of non-consensual sex, lol. This was super entertaining and I miss Percy already.

 

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★★★★★

I already wrote an entire review of this book, so I won’t talk much about it. But Call It What You Want offered an amazing and remarkable cast of morally grey characters, who make a bunch of questionable choices for the right reasons and whom you can’t help but fall in love with. I especially loved the writing and how fleshed out *every* single character was in here – even the best friends who are typically nothing but comic relief. Obviously, I loved this one a ton and can not wait to read more from Brigid Kemmerer in the future.

 

 

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★★★☆☆

I basically saw Cait giving this book a great review, I quickly learned it was about best friends who are also a little bit more, and it sounded beautifully dramatic, so I picked it up. I loved how Helene Dunbar created Sean’s voice – as someone who hasn’t had proper interaction with kids his age in years, it’s expected that Sean would sound a bit immature, but I loved how that dripped to the narration as well and sometimes I felt like I was indeed reading about a thirteen year old boy still. I enjoyed the writing style a lot, which makes me excited to read more about the author in the future. Unfortunately, though, I didn’t care as much for the side characters and felt like the plot resolved too quickly and conveniently.

 

 

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★★☆☆☆

I genuinely have no idea how to describe this novella, except that it is a weird relationship between a monster and a sorcerer, who’s equal frightening and sexual. I do think I would’ve enjoyed this a lot more had I not listened to the audiobook, as I couldn’t connect with the narrator at all, and I feel like it took a lot from the story. Even though I enjoyed the characters’ relationships and dynamics, I was not that interested in the overall plot, and ended up zoning out through most of it.

 

 

MONTHLY PLAYLIST

This is probably one of my favorite playlists I’ve ever made. There are so many classics here, but also a lot of songs I just recently discovered and fell in love with. And, of course, A LOT of the High School Musical The Musical The Series soundtrack because I’m obsessed.

LOOKING FORWARD

I am positive March will be an exhausting month, as I’ll be both working and going to classes regularly. But I am excited nonetheless, because two of my favorite shows are dropping a new season in March: On My Block and Elite. So I’ll at least have some motivation to wake up early everyday, lol!

 

Let’s chat in the comments: any new music recommendations? Books you loved in February? And how much do you like kids? Hahah.

what i’ve been watching recently #3

O da minha

And this feature is back for 2020!

I haven’t been watching a ton of new things, but I’m very excited for some upcoming releases during the next few months. S3 of Élite comes out in March and I already can not wait. It was a total surprise for me, because I thought I’d have to wait until September/October, but thankfully, the wait will be much shorter.

As for what I’ve been watching:

QUEER EYE (S1~S4)

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This is what I did during the last day of 2019: watched Queer Eye.

I already expected this show to be emotional, but I was taken aback. I’ve cried so much with practically every single episode. I love how this show focuses on self-love and self-confidence so much, and I also adore how they end up connecting with a lot of people that probably would’ve never considered them in different circumstances.

I think Season 1 remains my favorite, but all of them are unique and great on their own way. I have more favorite episodes than I can count, but one that resonated with me a lot was the Jones’ BBQ one from Season 3. I’d always be a bit *meh* when they were transforming women, but this one was so beautiful and emotional and made me so happy.

(Also, my favorite one out of the FAB 5 is Antoni. No one is surprised. I didn’t want that. I tried to fight it. I was determined not to be the basic bitch, but I couldn’t help it. The funniest part is that I don’t even like food and I pay attention to a total of zero things he says. I only pay attention to his face. I know, I suck).

HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL: THE MUSICAL THE SERIES

The name of this show, I swear to God. Why. So. Long.

Now, it is very much true that this girl right here doesn’t even have Disney+ because it’s not available in my country yet. But I’ve watched it nonetheless, because I am a child of the internet, and I was born knowing how to illegally download *anything*.

Y’all, this show was GOOD. I already had high hopes from the trailer, but oof. I spend the whole night watching it and then woke up and immediately re-watched all my favorite episodes.

It doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. The characters all let their emotions impact their performance on stage, which is so annoying. Scoffs = acting. There are a lot of unnecessary zoom-ins. But I was still so involved in the entire storyline, in love with all the characters, rooting for my favorite couples and jamming to the soundtrack like CRAZY.

For Disney standards, this discussed a lot more than I expected. It had two LGBT couples, and it also discussed empowerement and healthy relationships and being who you are in practically every single episode and I was SO happy to see it.

If you have Disney+, watch it. Even if you don’t, WATCH IT. It’s amazing and all the HSM references added 20+ years into my life spam.

LITTLE WOMEN

I can’t believe I’m jumping in the wagon and talking about Little Women too. I can understand the references people make in social media. I feel cultured.

I am hardly ever interested in Academy Award types of movies. I recently made a Buzzfeed test about “the most highly-acclaimed” movies I’ve watched and I think my result was something like 3/89. I really do not care for these things and am much happier watching rom-coms back to back.

But my sister and I had time to waste at the mall one afternoon, so we went for it. And it was *so* entertaining.

I legit though I was going to fall asleep halfway through the movie, because I was tired AF and it is historical fiction, but it was really dynamic. My biggest gripe with Academy Award movies is that they’re always so tragic – it’s like one bad thing after another bad thing and hey here’s another bad thing. But Little Women was lovely and wholesome, and while it had its rough moments, I loved the happy ending so much.

The cast was phenomenal and I can totally understand the hype behind Saoirse Ronan and Timothée Chalamet now. (I still don’t think he’s attractive, but his character was so childish and ADORABLE).

SKAM FRANCE (S5)

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Yes, I am obsessed with SKAM, ok. And what about it?

SKAM FR is the only remake that is getting more seasons than the original one had, which means this is a completely original season, focusing on a completely original character. So I’d already signed up, but moreover after finding out this season was following one of my favorite characters from S3 – Arthur.

(The entire boysquad of SKAM France is just *chef’s kiss*).

So far, this season has been an emotional rollercoaster, but I am really happy they’ve managed to keep the feel from OG that I love. And that we have so much bromance. Like, yes. Thank you. We still have a couple more weeks to go, but I’m really enjoying what I’ve watched so far. They’re discussing a completely new topic, and I was really surpised, but also really happy that SKAM FR decided to dedicate an entire season to it, as it is really relevant, but not adressed enough, especially in teenage shows.

 

What are you guys watching? Have you watched Little Women? If so, which of the characters you relate the most with? (I’d be Jo). Let’s chat in the comments!

monthly recap: january, ’20

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Hello, friends!

The start of 2020 was rather slow for me, but things are quickly picking up. I haven’t been the best at blogging, as I’m still trying to figure out my new schedule, but I’ll try to be more dilligent about it for the next few months.

HIGHLIGHTS

  • I got my seconds pierced. It’s not the most exciting highlight, but I’ve been really into earrings lately. My next goal is to get a helix piercing, but I’m SUPER scared of needles, so I’ll have to master up some courage before I do that. I’m satisfied with the look of my seconds, though, but it hurt a lot more than I anticipated, lol.
  • I got tickets to watch Harry Styles this October! Technically, this happened in December, but since I didn’t do a December wrap up, I thought it would be okay to share it in here. I’ve been a fan of Harry for the longest time, and this will be my first time watching him solo. I loved his most recent album and can’t wait for the concert. It will happen two days after my birthday, which is the best birthday present I could ask for.

BOOKS I READ

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★★★★☆

I started out the year by picking up Sick Kids in Love, by Hannah Moskowitz. This was a really eye opening experience, as it is centered on two disabled characters, coming from an own-voices perspective. I loved the differences between our main characters, but especially how fleshed out and well written they were. Sasha, our love interest, was so adorable, but also really nice. This book didn’t try to sugar coat or overly romanticize their conditions. It was actually really raw and hard-hitting at times, showing the bad things and the awkward things, and just the reality of what is it like living with a chronic ilness. I really enjoyed too how the main conflict in this book actually was not related to their condition, but rather with their past traumas and repressed feelings. The only down side for me is that, sometimes, it felt like I was reading about adults, not only on the voice, but also on the character’s decisions. It didn’t take away from being an amazing read, though!

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★★★★☆

I then listened to You’d Be Mine, by Erin Hahn. This book was *a lot* darker than I expected. It deals with topics such as suicide, trauma, alcoholism, drug use and addiction, so definitely keep that in mind if you decide to pick this one up. I was surprised, because I just thought it was going to be a fluffy contemporary read, but I loved it nonetheless. The characters were so well written and fleshed out. I liked both perspectives equally, which hardly ever happens, but I was able to connect with the two protagonists and feel for everything they were going through. Even though it covers dark themes, I still found it to be a really entertaining read. (I just could not wrap my mind around the fact the dude’s name was Jefferson. That was the biggest turn off ever).

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★★★★☆

The Upside of Unrequited has been on my TBR for ages, but I finally read it. I really appreciate how diverse this book is – the main character has two moms, a lesbian sister, who’s dating a Korean-American pansexual girl, and she herself is fat. I felt like all the reps were really well done and a great reflection of our diverse society. I already expected I’d relate to Molly and her struggles, but it still felt like a slap in the face at times. With all that being said, I was still bothered by how her insecurities almost “disappeared” once she found a guy that liked her back, because that’s just unrealistic. I also did not like Cassie – the sister – at all, and none of her really awful behaviors throughout the book were properly challenged, which made me quite uncomfortable. It was still entertaining enough and I was pleasantly surprised by how much I liked this, considering I hadn’t had the best luck with Becky Albertalli in the past.

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★★☆☆☆

I also should’ve listened to Caitlin when it comes to A Thousand Fires, but I guess I needed to see it for myself. This book is pitched as “The Outsiders meats Illiad”, but honestly, it should’ve been pitched as “Divergent but in 2019“. I felt like *so many* of the story beats and even characters’ personalities were similar to Divergent. It was weird, because this book centers on gang culture, but it didn’t feel realistic at all. I don’t know much about gangs, but I’m sure they’re not supposed to look like the factions from Divergent. The characters were also unlikeable and the plot/world-building was really weak too. I think when discussing gangs, especially today, there’s no way you can’t discuss the violence in the communities that lead people to join those gangs to begin with, but I didn’t feel like any of the characters were struggling enough and got themselves into it for the sake of it, which was really dumb in my opinion.

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★★★☆☆

Love Her or Lose Her was surprisingly one of the best romances I’ve read in a while. With that being said, I would *not* recommend this book to everyone. First, becaue Dominic, our main character, is one of those alpha male type of dudes that will make you eye-roll really badly. Second, because this book was steamy AF, much more sex-focused than any previous romance I’ve read. I still enjoyed it enough, because I knew what I was getting myself into when it comes to the sex scenes, and Dominic was surprisingly realistic in my opinion. I think the “sassy, witty and fun” male character from rom-coms doesn’t really exist in real life; but I know a lot of guys with this stoic, quiet personality, who struggle in expressing their feelings, but still feel it. I just felt like the side characters took *too* much space from the story sometimes, and the writing for the sex scenes was too corny. Nonetheless, I am weak for the failed marriage trope, so I truly had a field day with this one.

MONTHLY PLAYLIST

I am really in love with this playlist, and I’m glad it worked very well for the vibe at the beginning of the year. You’ll obviously be able to find Harry Styles in here, and I also found out that Drake actually has a couple songs I enjoy. I’ve never been into hip-hop, but these songs have more of a R&B vibe that it’s really up my alley.

LOOKING FORWARD

I’ll start my first part-time job ever in February, and I’m excited but also incredibly nervous. I will be working at a kindergarten, surrounded by kids, so I’m sure I’m making a much bigger deal out of it than necessary, but I’m always scared of new things. College hasn’t started for me yet and, during February, we also have Carnaval – one of the biggest holidays in Brazil -, and I’m excited to chill during those four days, hahah.

 

How’s 2020 treating you so far? What was your first read of the year? And anything you’re looking forward to in February? Let’s chat in the comments!

2019 goals recap & 2020 resolutions | i am nominated for the sunshine blogger award again and can’t shut up about rocketman

a yearly overview.

Hello, friends!

This is the last post I have for my 2019 overview series. We’ve already talked about my most disappointing reads of the year, my favorite books and now it’s time to wrap up the goals I set for myself at the beginning of the year and set new ones for 2020.

I feel like it would be fitting to also, while I do that, answer the questions that the lovely Charlotte set up for me after nominating me for The Sunshine Blogger Award. (By the way, thank you so much Charlotte for the nomination!)

2019 GOALS: i’ve actually accomplished something for once?

When I started setting up my goals for the year, I told myself I would go as easy as possible, because of how hard 2018 had been and I didn’t want to pressure myself into unattainable goals. And out of every item on the list, I managed to accomplish almost every single one! *cries*

  1. Read 40 books. ✔️ I actually read 68 books this year, so it was a total win.
  2. Read more books in different formats. ✔️ I ended up listening to 29 audiobooks this year, which means I listened to more books than I read them. I didn’t think I’d listen to this many audiobooks this year, but I’m glad it worked out this way! They’re really convenient and awesome and I truly fell in love. As for e-books/web comics, I definitely wish I’d read more, but I found out that I’m not as productive when reading digitally, because since I do not owe an e-reader, I end up reading on my phone, which can be very distracting.
  3. Stay away from negativity. ✔️ When I wrote this goal, I wanted to refrain from reading negative comments and looking for drama online and even if I wasn’t able to stay away from it *completely* (I am guilty of spending 40min on that Tati video dissing James Charles), it was an improvement from 2018, so I consider it a success.
  4. Keep around only people who put as much effort as you do. ✔️ I feel like if there was a lesson learned this 2019, was this. Since I graduated, I parted ways with a lot of my high school friends, but there were definitely a few I wanted to stay in touch with. Unfortunately, it didn’t happen with all of them, and I realized that it is okay to let go, especially when others do not put as much effort as I do.
  5. Stay true to who you are.✔️ If I’m being honest, I feel like this one was hard to do. There were definitely moments this year in which I found myself becoming a different type of person (more negative, passive-aggressive, always lowkey mean) but I’m glad I was able to notice it quickly and change my behavior.
  6. Spend less time on social media. ✖️ Honestly, I’m glad that my past self already knew this wasn’t going to happen. I definitely *tried*, though. I’d always say: oh, my screen time for this week was 5h? Okay, I’ll start trying to minimize that next week. Next week. Next week. And next week never came. Oh, well. Maybe next year.
  7. Write more! Journal more! Believe on my own writing!✖️✔️ I gave up on my WIP pretty quickly, but I have been journaling a lot more this year (and even shared some of my favorite entries), so I think this was partly successful, but it is one goal I want to carry on through 2020.

 

2019 HIGHLIGHTS: i’ve done other things apart from reading

Okay, not much, though. Reading has taken up a lot more space in my life this year, which I am so thankful for. Before we get to the other highlights, I’ll just quickly answer some reading questions but only with books I’ve read in 2019:

1. What book, if any, would you most love to see a prequel of?

22299763. sy475 I feel like it would be really nice to have a prequel on Crooked Kingdom. I’m sure most people are screaming right now READ THE GRISHA TRILOGY!!! but that’s not entirely what I mean. I think it would be nice to see characters from Ketterdam specifically and how that part of the world looked like before Kaz and the Dregs.

2. What’s your favourite lesser known, or talked about, book?

31822503Girls on the Verge is a book that, sadly, I haven’t heard many people talk about. Maybe because it is a slightly controversial topic (which shouldn’t be, by the way), but the book will follow our main character’s ride in order to get an abortion. It was really powerful, touching and also infuriating at times, and I really wish more people would read it.

3. Which fictional character do you most admire?

32620332. sy475 I think admiration is a really strong word, but I have to give it up for Evelyn Hugo. Even though I did not love this book as much as the rest of the bookish community, I did appreciate Evelyn Hugo a lot as character. She was a true badass, who made a lot of mistakes, but was still strong enough to stand up for them. I feel like she could go through everything.

4. What generally beloved character gets under your skin?

Can I answer Kaz Brekker AGAIN? Or maybe Eliza, from Eliza and Her Monsters, even though I feel bad for talking so many negative things about this book since I know it’s loved by so many here, lol.

Now, for other things I loved in 2019, that do not involve books for once.

5. What’s your favourite film that was released in 2019?

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There’s no other answer for this besides Rocketman. I spend the entire year obsessing over this movie, and I simply can not stop. This was so powerful and creative and beautiful and made me feel *all the things*. I’d never felt so instantly captivated by a movie in a long time, especially one in which I couldn’t relate to much.

Looking at Elton John’s life (this is Elton’s biopic, btw, in case you haven’t heard me or anyone else scream about it), I can’t say it’s particularly relatable. I’m not gay, I have never been involved with drugs or know anyone who has, I am not a musician. So, you could say there was technically nothing in this story for me, right? But this movie was so brilliant that I truly felt like I was going through every single thing, along with these characters, and I am SO glad I’ve watched it.

stranger things and other mysteries

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I only started watching Stranger Things this year, much later than most people, I know. But despise everything, I’m really glad I did. Not only because I found out a new fictional boyfriend (Jonathan Byers, thank you very much), but also because it helped me solidify teenage mysteries as my *favorite* genre of shows. (I’m pretty sure you can’t call this a genre. It’s more like a trope. Mystery but add teenagers as protagonists, lol). That’s why I also really enjoyed The Society, season 2 of Elite, season 2 of The End of the F***ing World, etc.

wallows. taylor swift too, but mostly wallows.

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When my Spotify Wrapped came around, I was definitely not surprised to see Wallows as one of my most played artists of the year. I only found out about the band halfway through 2019 and I’m so, so, so glad that I did. They’re such a great band, whose lyrics really mean a lot to me. It’s kinda funny, because when the members are talking about their song writing process, they always say they didn’t mean much with that line and just used it because they thought sounded good, but they always end up being so thought-provoking for me. I think it really is just an effortless thing for geniuses.

6. If you could meet anyone, past or present, who would it be and why?

Taylor Swift. Who also released a new album, which no one is surprised that I loved this much. I also got tickets to watch her next year, and I’m totally not freaking out about that.

(finally) 2020 GOALS: setting myself up for failure

7. What are you goals for 2020?

Well, friends, here they are:

  1. Read 50 books. This is probably the highest any of my Goodreads goals has ever been, so I’m probably setting myself up for failure here, but I’ll try anyway! I read almost 70 this year, so I should be able to do it, right? *crosses fingers*
  2. Learn how to drive. This is probably the scariest of all the goals in this list, if I’m being honest. The legal age to start driving in Brazil is 18, so I technically could’ve started lessons a year ago, but I’ve always been wayyyy too scared. However, I do know it is the responsible thing to do, so I’ll try no matter what.
  3. Believe in my dreams and work towards them. Honestly, I’ve never had long-term goals of things I wanted to achieve, or dreams to work towards. I think the only one was getting into university, which I did, but now I feel like it’s time to give bigger steps and truly believe that I am capable of doing the things I want to do, instead of just planning them.
  4. Find a blogging schedule. (What’s one piece of advice that you think all new bloggers should know?) Having a blogging schedule is hard. But so important. It can be very overwhelming to make sure you’re giving yourself enough time to read, blog, interact with others, and still have a life and other responsabilities. I really hope that in 2020 I find better balance to keep up with everything.
  5. Do not give up on writing. Or anything, for that matter. Fun fact about me: I always give up, whenever things get hard or overwhelming. If I could, I would’ve given up school a long time ago. I simply have the hardest time comitting to things, especially hobbies, such as blogging, writing, etc. But I’ll really, really try to finish everything I start in 2020. (Watch me fail that by week 2). I’ll never learn how to overcome obstacles if I give up at the first.

If you’ve reached the end of this massive post, let’s chat: What’s your favorite thing you did in 2020? Favorite movie/music artist you found out? And what are your resolutions for the new year? (Do you know how to drive and are you scared of learning too?) Let’s chat in the comments!