Hi everyone! Today I’m going to chat about the book I read this month and my favorite media items! And yes, I did say book. Singular. I’ve really failed at reading this month! I’m blaming school and my vacay to Mexico. (Parts one and two linked here if you missed them!)
You may have noticed the post name change too. Instead of making these posts only for books I’m going to include all media in here. So music, movies, tv shows, YouTube, etc. will be in this post! My main reason for that is because my reading goal is much lower this year and I don’t want to have posts like this one that would only have one book and be super short. So that’s the latest change to this blog!
Dream Big Dreams by Pete Souza
4 out of 5 stars
The first book I read is one I’ve been waiting to read for months! I’d requested it from the library awhile back but this book has been so popular I’ve waited quite some time for it. This is Dream Big Dreams by Pete Souza. If you read one of my past books posts you’ll remember that I had read Pete Souza’s previous books on President Ronald Reagan and President Barack Obama. Souza was the Official White House Photographer during both of these Presidents and I love how amazing his photos are that he shares in his books.
This book is the one meant for children, so the photos focus on the times President Obama interacted with children or did something that would greatly impact the quality of life for children. They also highlight the photos of him with his daughters and wife, as well as their visits abroad as a family while on official business. Most of the photo’s I’d already seen on social media but they are beautifully laid out in this book.
I am still waiting to read the version for adults which is even more popular considering I may not see it for a few months more, but this book was a great read and I really enjoyed it. I did give it a 4 out of 5 stars.
This is mostly stuff I’ve been watching on Netflix but the first item is One Day at a Time. This show revolves around a Cuban-American family. The mother is an Army veteran working as a nurse while adjusting to civilian life and struggling with PTSD. She lives with her two children and her mother, and all members of the family have unique and strong personalities. I love watching this show as it’s so centered on Hispanic families in today’s society and I see so many themes in it that I hear about so often.
A show I just started this past weekend is El Ministerio del Tiempo, which is a Spanish show that I found on Netflix as well. It’s a science fiction show about time travelers who work for an organization focused on keeping the doors to other times a secret and fighting anyone trying to change the course of time. I like it a ton as it’s quite hilarious and creative, but I do wish I knew more of Spanish history than I do currently to better understand the episodes and what implications might come before the characters have to spell it out for me or waiting for the scene to unfold. Even so, I’m a huge history nerd so I love learning as I watch.
This month I saw quite a bit in the theatre. The first performance was a play that I saw in Chicago called The Humans. This was a part of my subscription otherwise I likely wouldn’t have seen it but I’m glad I did.
I also saw a piano recital while in Mexico City at the Castillo de Chapultepec. The pianist was Jose Luis Arcaraz Lopez and I greatly enjoyed the performance. I haven’t been to a musical performance in some time so I clearly need to get back into that.
Next was the Ballet Folklorico de Mexico de Amalia Hernandez, which I saw that the Palacio de Bellas Artes in Mexico City. I loved seeing the dances from all over Mexico and I really am glad we were able to go visit to see this.
Lastly, I saw the musical Love Never Dies in Chicago. This is sort of the sequel to The Phantom of the Opera and while it’s not hugely popular, I really liked it! This was the last musical in my subscription to Broadway in Chicago so I am going to take a little break from going to the theatre until April (unless something comes up of course).
I have two song favorites from Love Never Dies. I really loved “The Beauty Underneath” and “Devil Takes the Hindmost” from the musical. Naturally both feature the Phantom pretty heavily and I have to say he is by far my favorite character from the musical. I think Christine is still my favorite in the original, even though she spends so much time on the floor in that one.
Two other favorite songs from this month that are not musical related are “Havana” by Camilla Cabello and “New Rules” by Dua Lipa. I feel like I was annoyed by “Havana” at first and grew to love it (much like the Taylor Swift Reputation album that I reviewed) but “New Rules” I liked a lot more when I first heard it and have slowly been getting sort of annoyed with it. So two opposites there!
I have so many YouTube Favorites and didn’t plan ahead but going forward I plan to highlight three YouTube channels or videos I’ve seen in the past month that I really enjoyed. I watch a lot of YouTube so that’s why I’m limiting it! Honorable mention does go to the Amazon Superbowl commercial which features celebrities standing in for Alexa’s voice because Alexa has lost her own. That commercial was brilliant!
First is Marie from Bits and Clips. She recently did an amazing camp themed birthday party for her oldest child, Scarlet, who is such a precious little lady! She’s also been doing live videos which I haven’t seen live as they’re during the day on Thursdays when I’m at work but I do watch them later. Marie’s entire channel is always one of my favorites as she isn’t in it for the fame or money or anything, she’s one of the few YouTubers that I’ve watched for years and her channel is still strictly for her own enjoyment rather than a career. And her family is so lovely and down-to-earth that I find it so refreshing!
Next is the TableTop series from Geek & Sundry. In it Wil Wheaton invites geeky celebrities to play board games with him and I binged a ton of these videos over the weekend. I couldn’t get enough! I have to say, I do normally watch a ton and then don’t watch for a few months again because they are quite long and require a lot of attention to follow along but it’s still so fun to watch.
And the last one is a specific video. It’s from the YouTuber Lily Pebbles called “Surprising my Grandma“. This was hard to pick (and I almost changed the above items) since I was looking through my history to find this video and saw so many other amazing videos but this one is one that I wanted to feature. I think because I just saw my grandfather that grandparents in general are a soft spot for me lately but in this one Lily gave her grandmother a copy of her new book to show her the dedication. Her grandmother cried when she saw it as it was to her. I thought this moment was so special that I watched it multiple times and really enjoyed it. I normally don’t link to things outside of my blog or blogs of people I know/interact with but for this video, I’ll make an exception.
And that’s my media wrap up for the month! Hopefully I get to read more next month but if not, at least you’ll know that I have plenty more to talk about in this post!
Thanks for reading!
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