book, movie, and fic reviews (10.11.18)

As promised, this post is dedicated to books, movies, and fanfiction I’ve consumed recently (and not so recently). I’ve got 23 books, 16 movies, and 6 fics in this post, so I’ve put most of it under a cut. Let’s get started.

BOOKS I READ

chaotic good - whitney gardner - princess academy - shannon hale - daughters of the dragon - william andrews - anothertoast book reviews

Chaotic Good by Whitney Gardner (Amazon | Goodreads) –  I was kind of disappointed the main character turned out to be cis and straight considering how important crossdressing is to the plot, but this book does a good job of exploring sexism and gatekeeping in fandom and geek culture, cyberbullying, costume design and construction, and the magic of Dungeons & Dragons. Also the illustrations are used really well.

Princess Academy by Shannon Hale (Amazon | Goodreads) – This is a middle grade book that’s cute, fun, low-key feminist, and a little bit magical.

Daughters of the Dragon by William Andrews (Amazon | Goodreads) – This is a good book that was really hard to read and which I never want to read again. It’s about the Korean “comfort women” who were forced into sexual slavery and repeatedly raped by the Imperial Japanese Army during WWII. The Japanese government refused to acknowledge it happened at all until 1993 and continues to downplay this horrific part of Japan’s history.

beauty queens - libba bray - the secret history - donna tartt - rich people problems - kevin kwan - anothertoast book reviews

Beauty Queens by Libba Bray (Amazon | Goodreads) – A bit heavy-handed and clumsily written, but the premise is so damn good: Lord of the Flies but the plane that crashes is carrying beauty pageant contestants.

The Secret History by Donna Tartt (Amazon | Goodreads) – This was my first Donna Tartt book and my GOD it did not disappoint. I loved the prose, especially the physical descriptions of people and the environment. Francis “Asparagus is in season” Abernathy is a precious gemstone, and I was so into this book that I read it between sets while crushed in the pit at a Dua Lipa concert.

Rich People Problems by Kevin Kwan (Amazon | Goodreads) The 3rd and final installment of the Crazy Rich Asians trilogy. Trashy, entertaining fun.

room - emma donoghue - ship it - britta lundin - the raven king - maggie stiefvater - anothertoast book reviews

Room by Emma Donoghue (Amazon | Goodreads) – Honestly this was kind of excruciating to read because it’s written from a 5-year-old’s point of view, but once you get used to it, WHAT A STORY! It is about abduction and abuse but also hope and resilience and adaptability.

Ship It by Britta Lundin (Amazon | Goodreads) – I loved this book. I love that the main character is afraid of and confused by her own queerness, I love that she falls for someone who is so sure of her own queerness that she doesn’t leave room for those who are questioning, I love that there’s a bi character who’s not 100% sure about her sexuality despite being comfortable with herself, and I love that the main character gets called out for not caring about minority representation that doesn’t directly affect herself. A+

The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater (Amazon | Goodreads) – I was loath to read this because I wanted The Raven Cycle series to go on forever, but I was in such a bad headspace re: work that I gave myself permission to escape to Cabeswater. It was super effective, and as soon as I finished reading, I immediately started looking for fic because I love all of my nightmare children so much!!!

the gentlemans guide to vice and virtue - mackenzi lee - sophia of silicon valley - anna yen - circe - madeline miller - anothertoast book reviews

The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee (Amazon | Goodreads) – This book really needs a trigger warning for physical abuse and period racism, but if you love gay-ass Victorians, sass, and character development, you’ll have a good time with this one.

Sophia of Silicon Valley by Anna Yen (Amazon | Goodreads) – Amusing, but disappointingly blasé about sexism and racism in the tech industry. This book was based off the author’s own work experiences in 1990s Silicon Valley, but I feel very strongly that if a book about the tech industry published in 2018 mentions sexist and racist behavior, it should also call it what it is: a systemic problem.

Circe by Madeline Miller (Amazon | Goodreads) – I decided to read this because I loved The Song of Achilles so fucking much, and it did not disappoint. Madeline Miller’s prose has this sort of timeless cadence that works particularly well in the context of Greek mythology, and it’s so beautiful it makes me want to both weep and swoon. This story is about Circe and WITCHCRAFT and POWERFUL WOMEN and (thirsty Spongebob voice) YOU. NEEEED IT!!!

Read more…

Reading Notes: The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants by Ann Brashares

This post contains affiliate links, because I like money, but I s2g I wrote this post before adding the affiliate links and the monetization does not affect my opinions. 

the sisterhood of the traveling pants - ann brashares - book cover

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants by Ann Brashares is one of those books that I had zero interest in reading when it came out. Maybe even less than 0 interest. Maybe like -5 interest.

It’s not just that everyone else wanted to read it or had already read it and loved it, and I was an angry middle schooler who hated doing what was expected of me (like painting my nails and enjoying Degrassi).

It was that by not liking what the pretty (read: white, mostly blonde) girls at school liked, I could avoid being judged for failing to measure up. By not playing the same game as they did, I couldn’t lose.

I realized eventually that my behavior was a product of a racist society as well as my own internalized misogyny, and that, for example, Legally Blonde is a great movie, and I’m proud to be Chinese-American, and glitter is glorious.

(Granted, I was way more interested in The Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter books and movies than anything that had to do with real life, because I realized at an early age that fiction was a great way to escape the hellscape that is living on this planet.)

So when The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants went on sale on Kindle (once again, shoutout to Goodreads daily deals!) I decided to give it a chance, and I… wish I’d checked it out from the library instead.

It was alright. I’m not going to read it again, but I could see myself liking this book a lot if I’d picked it up during early adolescence instead of in my mid-20s. I am definitely most like Lena, but I see myself in both Tibby and Bridget. This book felt real. Growing up is so sad, and happiness is both so small and so huge, y’know?

But frankly, it’s not the kind of YA I want to be reading these days.

Nonetheless, here are some (spoilery) quotes and excerpts that I liked felt the need to comment on, and exactly one vocabulary word, after the jump.

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buy this thing: The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller (for $1.99!)

This post contains affiliate links, because I like money, but I s2g I wrote this post before adding the affiliate links and the monetization does not affect my opinions.

My daily Goodreads email has just alerted me to the fact that the Kindle edition of The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller is on sale for $1.99 until July 31. This book is GORGEOUS and GLORIOUS and TRAGIC and I LOVE IT and I promise you will love it too. It’s about Patroclus and Achilles and friendship and love and the Trojan War, and it will make you feel so many feelings. Here’s what is probably my favorite quote:

When he speaks at last, his voice is weary, and defeated. He doesn’t know how to be angry with me, either. We are like damp wood that won’t light.

GORGEOUS!!!

lately (05.14.17)

This post contains affiliate links, because I like money, but I s2g I wrote this post before adding the affiliate links and the monetization does not affect my opinions.

I started off this post with “well pals it’s been a long time since my last life update,” but then I realized… I haven’t posted any life updates on this blog. What a concept.

Anyway, it’s been never since my last life update, so here’s what I’ve been up to lately:

  • skivving off work for a hot second in order to obtain A SOLO TICKET FOR SOLO HARRY STYLES!!! 🌸🌺🌷🌹 I did try to buy multiple tickets at first, but after one failed search, I spooked and switched to searching for a single ticket, which I bought as soon as it appeared on my phone screen. The whole process took like a minute and a half, not counting the 5 minutes before the sale time when I sat there compulsively refreshing my phone, but it felt like I’d just run a marathon. I’ll be seeing him in San Francisco (#BLESSED) and I can’t WAIT to hear my beautiful frog prince son Harry Styles perform! The last time I saw him in concert was at One Direction’s Up All Night Tour in 2012, which is way too long ago. I’m especially looking forward to hearing “Carolina,” “Two Ghosts,” and “Ever Since New York” live.

WHAT. A. BABE.

Black mini backpack, black blazer with a bit of shoulder padding, black button-up shirt buttoned to the neck, all offset with her true red lipstick!!! Sartorial genius!!!

AN ICON. AN ANGEL.

💖

  • reading 8 Minutes Idle by Matt Thorne and honestly kinda loathing it every time I pick it up. I received the ebook for this when I Kickstarted the film project (because I liked Antonia Thomas so much in Misfits), but I find Dan SO unlikeable, and the scenarios he finds himself in get progressively more depraved and seem to serve no purpose in the story. :/
  • finishing my reread of Call Me By Your Name by André Aciman, which I started immediately after my first read, because it is that good. (It is hands-down the sexiest book I have ever read in my entire life.🍑) As with my first read, I highlighted a lot of sections in the Kindle app, although this time I was actually unable to export my highlights because I exceeded the publisher limit for exports… probably because I highlighted THIRTY-ONE PAGES of text. That’s 12.1% of the 256-page long book. If that’s not a convincing recommendation I don’t know what is.
  • reading The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas and cringing because it’s so accurate and casual in its depiction of the small and large indignities and injustices that people of color face – some groups more than others. While it’s occasionally heavy-handed, 1) some people need systemic racism spelled out for them, and 2) it’s hard not to fall in love with the characters and root for Starr, the Black teenage girl who narrates the story, and for her family and friends and neighbors and white-ass boyfriend. And frankly, it feels really fucking validating to read in print a story that acknowledges just how much white people DON’T GET IT!!! (See the fuck below.)

women's march - angela peoples - don't forget white women voted for trump - kevin banatte

(Photo by Kevin Banatte for The New York Times)

Reading The Hate U Give as person of color who is not Black is especially interesting because I don’t get all the African American cultural references, but I absolutely recognize Starr’s experiences with code switching, going the fuck off when someone makes comments that have no violent intent but that are still hurtful and racist, wondering if you’re good enough for your white partner in your interracial relationship, and being ride or die for your family. I don’t think I’ll ever feel safe joining a protest, but I can and will continue using my voice to say “Uh, hey, that’s kind of racist” even when it means calling out my family or friends or coworkers. Minority solidarity, y’all.

  • trying to wring as much enjoyment as I can out of my life while being stressed from trying to keep house for two adults other than myself

It’s Sunday afternoon and I suppose I should be meal prepping and reviewing my workload and whatnot for the coming week, but instead I’m trying out this pizza dough recipe from Smitten Kitchen, because life is short, and trying to make a heart-shaped pizza for my mom on Mother’s Day is more important than being a model employee, y’know?

(My previous from-scratch attempts have been with this slightly different recipe, but my results have been mediocre, I suspect because I don’t roll my dough out thin enough.)

Here’s to a good week, pals. 🥂

The Raven Boys is ON SALE and i’m PSYCHED because you should read it

This post contains affiliate links, because I like money, but I s2g I wrote this post before adding the affiliate links and the monetization does not affect my opinions.

The Kindle edition of The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater is on sale TODAY ONLY!!! for $3.99 (originally $9.99, according to the GoodReads email that alerted me to this most glorious deal). Cop yer copy while the price is right, or let me convince you with my in-depth literary analysis reading notes (a vocabulary list and choice quotes) (though they are a bit spoiler-y, so beware).

From the author’s own website:

“Four private school boys and a psychic’s daughter quest for ancient magic in the mountains of Virginia”

WHAT MORE COULD YOU WANT???

Reading Notes: The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

This post contains affiliate links, because I like money, but I s2g I wrote this post before adding the affiliate links and the monetization does not affect my opinions.

the raven boys - maggie stiefvater - book cover - the raven cycle

I purchased my copy of The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater one day last October when I was feeling really, really down. I’d heard many positive (read: raving) reviews on Tumblr, and I figured what better pick-me-up can I get for $5.99 without leaving my bed than a Kindle copy of a YA fantasy novel where you can ship pretty much all configurations of the characters?

(YA and fanfiction have long been my escapist self-care of choice. Sometimes self-care is brushing your teeth; sometimes it’s reading Drarry fic. I was having a really bad day when I sprung for The Raven Boys.)

Anyway, the short of it is that I, too, am now a raving fan of The Raven Boys. (A raven fan? Please stop me.) It’s fun and easy to read, a little bit creepy, and a lotta bit NOW KISS!!! What more could I ask for?!

If it’s any testament to how much I liked it, I

  1. paced myself and read it over several weeks because I didn’t want it to end
  2. still haven’t read the second installment in the series, because I know I’m going to become obsessed with it to the point of total distraction

If you like your YA fantasy with boarding school uniforms and unresolved sexual tension up the wazoo, check out my reading notes, after the jump.

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things i liked in 2016

This post contains affiliate links, because I like money, but I s2g I wrote this post before adding the affiliate links and the monetization does not affect my opinions.

I don’t know about you, but I

  1. am no longer feeling 22*, and
  2. spent New Year’s Day warming up canned soup and periodically sticking a thermometer in my partner’s mouth and checking and re-checking the maximum daily dosage of Tylenol.

(I also got to watch BBC Sherlock‘s “The Six Thatchers”** and an episode and a half of Jessica Jones (thanks, Netflix free trials!) in bed while my partner slept, which was nice.)

(I also also helped clean up after the cat spilled a glass of water onto the bed, floor, and nightstand, and then I cleaned out her litter box (#samfirst), because Stockholm Syndrome***.)

*I have not felt 22 since I was 22 and spent my lunch breaks sitting on park benches crying about how much I hated my job and my weekends drinking about some guy who wouldn’t text me back and repeating to myself, “This is the way my cookie crumbled, and I’m trying to make it something I’m proud of again,” and, coincidentally, when “22” (Taylor Swift™ No copyright infringement intended. Property of TAS LLC management 2013©) was released.

**LORD HELP US ALL TJLC WILL BECOME REALITY AND THEY WILL MAKE TELEVISION HISTORY AND MY SOUL WILL FINALLY BE FREE FROM JOHNLOCK HELL

***Buy One Direction’s “Stockholm Syndrome” on iTunes!!!

The rest of my first week of January consisted of reading Sherlock theories, getting ghosted by Muni trains for an entire hour on my first day back at work, having my heart broken by both Noah and Jude in I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson (I’m not done yet, but already I am crushed with the weight of my emotions), buying an early Valentine’s Day card for my bae, catching up on Talk Direction, watching s’more Jessica Jones, listening to Ed Sheeran’s “Shape of You” on repeat, and watching Sherlock‘s “The Lying Detective” and then screaming about it.

But before I attempt to look ahead to the rest of this year, I’d like to pause and mention things I liked in 2016, as inspired by Cara:

The iPhone 6s. I’m not even sure this is a great phone, but it’s such a dramatic upgrade from my iPhone 4 that I can’t hear you over the sound of actually being on the latest versions of apps.

Growing succulents. For the first time in my life, I’ve successfully kept a non-cactus plant alive for more than a few weeks. I’m even propagating my succulents at my partner’s apartment (he gets better sunlight), and they are so dang cute and tiny.

The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay by Michael Chabon. I picked up my copy at SFPL’s Big Book Sale because this guy in one of my freshman seminars said it was his favorite book, and his sheer enthusiasm left an impression on me that lasted, like, six years. This book broke my heart in a million small ways and about six enormous ones. It is funny, poignant, swashbuckling, and epic. It is gorgeous. It is now my #1 favorite book of ever, so there’s that. If you haven’t read this, please do yourself a favor and DO.

Waiting by Ha Jin. I picked up this book at SFPL’s Big Book Sale because one of my high school Chinese teachers recommended it, and honestly??? I straight-up hated this book and both main characters for almost the ENTIRE book, but the emotional payoff of the ending was 1) SO FUCKING CHINESE and 2) so worth it. Absolutely recommend.

Cryptonomicon by Neal Stephenson. I loved this book, but 1) it was my first Neal Stephenson book, so I had nothing to compare it to (I’ve heard many people say they couldn’t finish this book, but they really liked Snow Crash), and 2) I actually enjoyed Stephenson’s “this writer really likes to hear himself talk” style of writing (unlike when I tried to start reading Infinite Jest and stopped after a few pages out of total boredom). I picked this up at the SFPL Big Book Sale at the recommendation of Augustine, a friend I made at my coding bootcamp a couple years ago. Maybe not for everyone considering it’s 918 pages long, but I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, not because it was very good (it read like mediocre fanfiction), but for sending me into a Harry Potter death spiral, what with Ron and Hermione together in every version of the universe, and Draco Malfoy being LONELY, and Harry having to literally witness his parents’ deaths… what the fuck. Anyway, Albus & Scorpius 4ever, amirite lads?

Yuri!!! on Ice, an anime about competitive male figure skating, centered around the relationship between Katsuki Yuri, a Japanese figure skater, and Viktor Nikiforov, his Russian coach. I found out about this show through Tumblr (of course), and lemme tell you, it is SO PURE. It handles Yuri’s performance anxiety and general lack of self confidence with respect and realism! (I too have felt so overwhelmed that I’ve given up and tried to sleep the feelings away!) And the progression of Viktor and Yuri’s relationship truly cleansed my soul – it was like coming out of the water and drying off in the warm sun (or coming off the ice rink and soaking in a hot spring!!!). The choreography and animation of the skating routines are beautiful, and the show’s depiction of competitive ice skating is accessible to the casual viewer while being completely realistic. Honestly, Yuri!!! On Ice might be the best thing to have come out of 2016.

The Girl on the Train, the movie. (I haven’t read the book.) It gave me serious Gone Girl vibes, but it was like 4000 times more satisfying, because everyone got what they deserved, and also men are the worst.

Spotify, which I’d only used occasionally until this past year. I used to listen to KPop on repeat on iTunes during work, but now I jump around on Spotify’s web player when people are taking their phone calls too loudly in the office. It’s rad.

These songs, all of which are pop and almost certainly things you’ve already listened to:

Bob’s Burgers, which I’m watching with my boyfriend. It’s funny, weird, and a little dark while being ultimately optimistic – all things I love in a television show.

Deadpool, which made me laugh out loud in the theater within the first 30 seconds. Definitely one of my favorite Marvel movies ever, and Ryan Reynolds was actually… really hot, so… yes.

Goodreads Deals, which is a fucking blessing in the form of a daily email that alerts you about special pricing for Kindle books that you might be interested in based on your Goodreads profile. I read a lot more on my phone than on paper these days (which is both surprising and unsurprising to me, because I love books but it’s also way easier to hold your phone when you’re standing on Muni than to hold a paperback), and Goodreads Deals has already introduced me to a handful of wonderful books for usually less than $3 each. I have zero intention of unsubscribing in the foreseeable future.

Plant Nanny, an app that helps you drink more water and the #1 reason why my skin has been so much clearer this past year. In the app, you grow a cute little virtual plant that you can only water when you yourself drink water, and if you go too many days without drinking an adequate amount of water, your plant shrivels up and dies an adorable, guilt-inducing death. (I actually heard about Plant Nanny through Coffee with Chrachel, which I heard about through Talk Direction.)

CLIO Kill Black waterproof liquid eyeliner. I’ve marveled at my friend Jess’s mastery of liquid eyeliner and perfectly flicked cat-eyes since I first watched her do her eyeliner in a compact mirror while we sat at a food court table at the mall back in like 2012, and I’ve always struggled with the angle of cat-eye wings, but CLIO’s Kill Black liner made it so, SO much easier to achieve her look. The brush is both stiff and supple, with a fine tip that makes it easy to draw a good line, the pigmentation is superbly dark, and the finish has a slight sheen that I really love the look of. (And if you want to buy it through SokoGlam, shoot me an email so I can get $10 and you can get 20% off.)

Sleeping masks/packs, which have proven way, way more beneficial for my skin than sheet masks. Sheet masks are fun and relaxing, but they don’t actually do that much for me. Sleeping masks, on the other hand, help so much with hydration. I thought sleeping masks were really thick and goopy and didn’t understand how people didn’t just smear it all over their pillowcases until I tried a sample of the A’Pieu Good Night Water Sleeping Mask. It was lightweight and actually dried down on my skin after a few minutes like any other lotion or cream, and when I woke up, I was glowing. Since then, I’ve also purchased the SKIN CERAMIC Donkey Milk Yogurt Sleeping Pack, which has a really weird consistency (like melty mozzarella ice cream) but solid results, and the Innisfree Jeju Sparkling Mineral Night Spa Mask, which smells super refreshing, is lightweight, and leaves my skin calm when I wake up.

CosRx Natural BHA Skin Returning A-Sol, which I’ve been using as a spot treatment. It’s helped a lot with my hormonal acne, bringing things to a head/to the surface more quickly, and sometimes actually preventing breakouts in the first place. Your mileage may vary, of course, but I recommend giving this a try if you’ve never tried any actives or chemical exfoliants – this one’s pretty gentle. (My only gripes are that it smells like stinky tofu, and the pump dispenser just kind of shoots it forward instead of into your hand, but you get used to it.)

SUM:37 Miracle Rose Cleansing Stick, as my solid cleanser when I travel. This contains coconut oil and it foams, so it’s technically both an oil cleanser and a foaming cleanser, but I use it as just a foaming cleanser. It works well and doesn’t leave my skin feeling stripped, but it made my boyfriend break out (probably from the coconut oil), so, as with everything, patch test.

ColourPop liquid lipsticks, especially their metallics. I own and love Man Eater (metallic rose gold that reads almost bronze on me; perfect for that bionic woman look (no, seriously, this is shockingly wearable)) and Mugshot (metallic cranberry red that leans pink; fantastic for slightly unconventional holiday looks), but the Ultra Satin Lip in TooLips is also gorgeous. It’s a “deepened plum brown” that reads nearly black on me, but in a slightly pigmented way that’s more flattering than pure black. These wear well when eating/drinking, reapply well, and are $6. SIX FREAKING DOLLARS. Eat that, Kylie.

Black cotton period underwear. I don’t know how I spent this much of my menstruating life without dedicated period underwear, but I finally bought 5 pairs of black cotton hipsters from Gap (on sale, so they were $5.40 each) and they have VASTLY increased my quality of life by giving me one less thing to worry about staining when I’m on my period, AND they offer enough booty coverage that I can wear them when I’m using my Lunette menstrual cup with a pantyliner or wearing an ultralong super absorbent overnight pad with wings.

Maxing out my retirement accounts. I maxed out my Roth IRA with Betterment early in the year, and in Q2 of 2016, my company started offering a 401k plan with both traditional and Roth options. I don’t get a match, but I’m still excited for my first 401k ever! I opted to split my 401k contributions between traditional and Roth, and I finished maxing out in Q4. (Please note: I have the privilege of working at a relatively high-paying job while still living at home. I did not manage to do this through extreme frugality.)

Opening a savings account with Ally. That sweet 1% interest on my emergency fund tho. Way better than whatever hundredths of a percent I was getting.

The Chase Freedom card. That sweet 1% cash back (and rotating 5% cash back categories) tho. A fantastic perk for someone like me who uses credit cards like cash.

Ebates, because I do a shit-ton of my shopping online, and it’s so easy to earn cash back if you use the Google Chrome extension to remind you if you’re on an Ebates-eligible website. I’ve earned $292.04 in cash back since 2013, so it’s been super useful for me, especially around the holidays. (If you’re not already signed up, you can use my referral link so I can get $25, and you can get $10. (I swear to you ALL of that $292.04 was from my own consumerism, not referral bonuses.))

Having shower sex during my period. In 2015, I had two very painful UTIs from having sex while on my period, which I was told was “normal” and “won’t be considered a problem unless you have more than three in a year.” It didn’t matter if I showered before and after, avoided using my Lunette menstrual cup, chugged water so I could pee waterfalls afterward, or took a billion cranberry pills. (I did all of those things religiously, and I still got the 2nd UTI.) After cautious experimentation, I realized that it was fine to have sex near the end of my period, when my flow was much lighter (which leads me to think that something about the presence of lots of blood makes me more likely to get a UTI). In any case, I ended up having shower sex (#samfirst) while I was on my period, and it was glorious. First of all, my fertility cycle is pretty predictable and also on the long side, which means that I don’t have to worry about pregnancy for the first few days of my period, at the very least, which makes for a very happy partner with a very happy penis. Second, when you’re on your period, penetration is way, waaay easier, which means I don’t have to worry about lube or more than, like, 10 minutes of foreplay. Third, there’s no mess!!! My partner and I used to lay down an old comforter for period sex, and it ended up covered in all sorts of stains and frankly disturbing handprints. He enjoys period sex, so he didn’t and doesn’t care about the mess, but it’s certainly more convenient when you’re not leaving bloody evidence everywhere. And finally (and most importantly), I don’t get UTIs from period sex anymore. Win, win, win, and WIN.

Excedrin, even though it makes me feel anxious and panicky after I take it. (It’s probably the caffeine.) Sometimes you just have to kick that migraine’s ass, even if it means being very nervous for no reason for a while.

Running on a treadmill. I used to hate running. I still kind of do, but now I love-hate it. Running outdoors isn’t really an option for me (I don’t feel safe running outdoors in the early morning or in the evening, which are the only times I can run), but running indoors while listening to Talk Direction at a fixed pace is actually pleasant, and the post-run euphoria is Real, guys. It feels so good. (The pacing was actually my biggest problem – I have to run a lot more slowly than I thought, but now I can actually run an entire mile without feeling like Death Is Come, so I consider that a huge win.)

And, last but in fact GREATEST, being blessed by this Corgi sploot:

I’m under that blanket. I fell asleep on the living room floor, and Butters came by and splooted behind my butt.

Hella blessed, hella thankful.