• There are so many great artists out there, it's easy to get stuck in a genre listening to the same-old, same-old! To change things up, here are 10 indie folk alt-rock bands to add to your playlist.

    10 Indie Folk Alt Rock Artists to Add to Your Playlist

    There are so many great artists out there, it’s easy to get stuck in a genre listening to the same-old, same-old! To change things up, here are 10 indie folk alt-rock artists to add to your playlist. I’ve always loved music. Could be because I grew up in a family with lots of musicians, or, maybe it’s because music has played such a large part in our lives—both playing and listening. Perhaps it’s simply a coincidence. Regardless, over the years my taste in music has varied. I remember in elementary school when I first started finding music that wasn’t something my parents were already listening to, thanks to my boombox…

  • Learning to read is the first important step in the literacy journey. Learning to love to read is a magical adventure! These ten books for tweens and teens are titles they can sink their teeth into, and a list you'll enjoy reading (or re-reading), too!

    10 Enjoyable Books for Tweens and Teens (and You Too)

    Learning to read is the first important step in the literacy journey. Learning to *love* to read is a magical adventure! These ten books for tweens and teens are titles they can sink their teeth into, and a list you’ll enjoy reading (or re-reading), too! I developed a love of reading early on. My parents are avid readers, and I suppose that affected my inclination to pick up books. We took lots of trips to the library—a place that continues to bring waves of nostalgia each time I step foot inside—leaving with stacks of books after having returned just as many the week prior. Planning for trip has always included…

  • 10 reasons why Outlander is so popular and why you should read and watch!

    10 Reasons Why Outlander Is so Popular

    Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock (I’ve been guilty of that), you’ve likely heard of Outlander, and there’s probably some head-scratching while wondering what all the fuss is about. Here are 10 reasons why Outlander is so popular that will help explain why you should read the books and watch the series! I’m not afraid of change or of trying new things. That said, sometimes it takes me a while to catch on to pop culture trends—to pause a beloved TV series that I’ve watched a bazillion times, or to put down a dogeared favorite novel. Okay, that might be a tad over-dramatic. The reality is, I’m busy. It takes loads…

  • What is it about summer that makes reading seem so much more inviting? I have a long list of books I've been waiting to start, and vacation seems like the best place to dig in!

    Summer Reading List for Vacation

    What is it about summer that makes reading seem so much more inviting? I have a long list of books I’ve been waiting to start, and vacation seems like the best place to dig in! Just like the dead of winter, hot and steamy summer days make me want to read. I’m guessing it has to do with wanting to be inside, curled up on the couch and away from extreme weather. This past week, Marylanders were faced with temps over 90°F. Before noon. By lunch grew to something ungodly … like 110°F. Well, with humidity, because here just the heat isn’t enough. You have to be able to swim through…

  • The draw of Stranger Things, especially for Gen Xers and Xennials.

    The Draw Of Stranger Things

    This time last year I had just stumbled upon the Netflix original series Stranger Things. To be more precise, July 17, 2016, was the date I crossed the finish line with the final episode a mere two days after Netflix released them all at once. That’s eight nearly-hour-long, commercial-free episodes, my friends. IN. TWO. DAYS. Sure, I’ve enjoyed plenty of binge-worthy TV shows over the years, but it’s been a while since a series has pulled me in so completely, and so early in its availability. Like, before the wave of obsession hit the mainstream. I was late to the game with The Walking Dead, Game of Thrones, Fringe, and Sons of Anarchy (and many others, too), catching up via Netflix…

  • 16 TV Shows To Binge

    My favorite things to do when I’m not working (and I don’t have any other obligations) are reading, watching movies, or getting sucked into a television series—I’m always looking for new tv shows to binge. In fact, our living room TV is mounted above the fire place, surrounded by books that live on the mantle. My desk, where all the writing takes place, is only a few feet away. It’s like all my favorite things in one place! It used to be you had to wait painstaking week, after painstaking week, for a new episode of a favorite show. And, even if you were able to find a show to…

  • During vacation season, reading becomes a front-and-center activity as toes are dipped in sand, lazy Sundays on the back porch abound, and the fast-paced school year has come to an end. I'm sharing one of my favorite books you should add to your collection: "Garlic and Sapphires," by Ruth Reichl.

    Garlic and Sapphires

    If you haven’t read Garlic and Sapphires, by Ruth Reichl, then it’s time to add it to your library. I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for me to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. This post may contain affiliate links. “This is one of those times I wish you were still a meat-eater,” I muttered to my sister. Wait, let me back up a little first. In 2011, I finished reading Garlic and Sapphires, Ruth Reichl’s honest autobiographical account of her costumed journey as the New York Times food critic in the ’90s. To…

  • Period drama movies you can stream.

    30 Period Drama Movies You Can Stream Right Now

    A wide variety of period drama movies to stream from the comfort of your couch with a glass of wine and a cozy blanket. I think my love of period drama movies started when I was in elementary school and stumbled upon the Laura Ingalls Wilder series. I found her books captivating, especially Little House in the Big Woods and Little House on the Prairie—I’m guessing because I was a similar age to the main character at the time. Oh, to wear calico printed dresses, lace-brimmed bonnets, and to eat maple syrup “candy” made with freshly fallen snow! I devoured those novels. via GIPHY From a modern elementary schooler’s perspective,…