Hello everyone! Today I’m sharing all the updates on my hobbies in March, as well as some big or fun events!
Even though these posts end up being much longer than I would like, I really prefer to have it all in one instead of split up, so I’m glad I made that change!
This section is all about my hobbies!
I did one DIY this month! Normally it’s two but the library closed for two weeks to help prevent the spread of the virus so the second one of the month was cancelled. This month we made a cloud lantern! We got a paper lantern, some cotton, and a ton of glue. It was quite stressful trying to glue it all on because I wanted a really fluffy cloud and the glue did not want to work that hard but we made it work in the end! I haven’t posted or even taken a photo of it now that I think about it so if I do I’ll be sure to share it on my insta! (My @ is StarringPamela, pls follow.)
I did go to a guitar lesson at my library this month. There are lessons on the first Tuesday of every month but for some reason I just haven’t remembered to register and to go for a long time! I think the first and only lesson I attended before this one was maybe last September? I walked into the lesson and there was already three other students inside. One was a boy who is “about to turn 13” as he told me a few times and who is super talented! He is really good already and like most 13-year-old boys, he wanted to play guitar fast and speed through songs so the instructor kept telling him to slow down and be more mindful of his technique. He also said he used to play flute for his school band which I got excited about because I used to play flute too! He was a very polite and sweet kid for sure. The other boy was 16 and quite mature for his age from what I understood. He told me that the instructor we had was like his mentor which was also nice to hear and that he mostly plays electric guitar. He also seemed quite polite and very bright. Honestly, I don’t spend time with kids at all so this was definitely a new and cool experience for me. The other student was a 63-year-old woman who also goes to my DIY night. She is quite annoying honestly, as she likes to yell everything she says to get attention and since there were loud guitars then she would try to yell over all of them too. She didn’t seem to have been going for long either though so she was also working on basics as I was. All three of the other students though I think are regulars for the class as the two boys were quite good and practicing things like scales and more complex stuff and the woman is at the library all the time so I image she just goes to everything (a lot of the DIY ladies do that actually). The instructor was very nice and patient with everyone, and I could tell he’s the go to at the library to fix anything as two people came in during the lesson to tell him the wifi was down LOL. He eventually fixed it in a few minutes and at the end of the lesson I let him borrow my guitar as he had been obsessed with it the whole lesson. Apparently my guitar is a “Spanish style” guitar (learned that during my first lesson) and not one you’d normally find. I bought it years ago in Mexico and brought it back with me on the plane when I was around ten, so I didn’t know too much about it, but my instructor loved it. Anyways, for what I actually did, I learned the G, C, and E minor chords. I also had to cut my nails to be much shorter because they kept getting in the way while I was trying to practice.
I did also pick up my flute! I used to play in school and still own my flute, so I thought, why not practice a bit? I was surprised how much I still remembered since I maybe pick it up only once a year now, but I was flying through the scales and warm up activities that I used to do with far less mistakes than I had expected. I really enjoyed it and I might have to practice more! I do need to pick up a polishing kit when the stores are open again or order one online as it is looking very tarnished, the poor thing. I also think I might have to take it in for some minor repairs if I do end up playing more often because I think one key was sticking a bit. However, if it goes the way my guitar has been going, I probably won’t be doing either of those things if we’re being honest.
I read one book this month, Nothing to See Here by Kevin Wilson. This was the second book I read for the Readheads book club that I joined with my friend Erin. I didn’t like this one but it was very short (about 250 pages) so I kind of powered through it. I just didn’t find the plot that interesting or the characters to be that intriguing either. I ended up giving it 2 out of 5 stars as it wasn’t terrible, just not what I would prefer to read.
I finished the first season of The Expanding Universe of Ashley Garcia on Netflix. I started it last month and I think I left off on episode 5 so I only had a few more to watch before finishing as there are 8 episodes. It was lots of fun and we got to see Ashely in a work setting a few more times before the end which was nice too!
I watched a few episodes of Broken on Netflix. It’s a docuseries that follows different industries to pinpoint the “dark side” of it. The first one is probably the most well known of the series, as it was about counterfeit makeup. I’d seen it already once before when it first came out but I wanted to rewatch it. It was super interesting and a great look into how crazy the makeup world is. This one explored how dangerous, and disgusting, counterfeit makeup can be and the impact on the legitimate companies who are copied, as well as the (potentially unknowing) consumer who decided to try these products on their own face. I also saw the third episode on disposable furniture and how it can be environmentally harmful and even deadly to the consumer. The final episode was on recycling and how big companies with lots to close have conditioned consumers to believe that recycling can negate the large amount of plastic that is used day to day. It reveals that this belief is incredibly incorrect and why more hasn’t been done to stop the damage already.
I also ended up watching one episode of Explained on Netflix too. It was the episode “The Next Pandemic” for obvious reasons. I figured might as well watch and see how similar this seems to be! It went into a bit of the science explaining how these viruses are created, as well as how they can spread beyond their original location and country. The episode also went into depth about how the world wasn’t prepared for a big outbreak but honestly, I think the early shut downs of everything seems to be doing well so far. It was very interesting though!
Musicals & Concerts
This month I went to go see Grease the Musical at the Marriott Theatre in Lincolnshire. I love that little theatre as the stage is in the middle of the room and so everyone is seated around it. It’s such a cool and unique experience every time! I’ll be posting a full review of it, most likely during BirthMay because I have other posts scheduled already before then. In the meantime though, I’ll let you know that I really enjoyed it! The musical version is different than the movie and I honestly love them both. There are a lot of songs in the musical that didn’t make it into the movie that I do really love so it was really nice to see them performed and the cast was amazing. It was so fun and well worth it!
This month I became obsessed with listening to the musical Six. I might have mentioned it before but it’s about the six wives of Henry VIII who decide they want to form a female pop group. It’s super fun, very upbeat, and I love the music! I had the CD from the library in my car for a bit and really enjoyed it at the start of the month.
I’ve also been enjoying the musical Be More Chill, which I went to see back in August of last year in NYC (review linked there!). I also got that CD from the library and put it in my car to enjoy! This one is about a high schooler named Jeremy who implants a super computer into his brain that tells him how to act and what to say, so that he can become more popular in school. It’s such a fun musical and I really enjoy listening to it on my way to work and then back home.
I did want to mention Meghan Rienks and her story on how her vlog channel was hacked. Meghan has had such a roller coaster of a story with YouTube. It started when her main channel acted strange, as in she was the only one who could see it and it was hidden to everyone else, so she contacted YouTube, who was super unhelpful but eventually it was fixed. Shortly after, her vlog channel was hacked, sold online by the hacker, and someone else started uploading videos onto it. Meghan has since posted two full videos detailing out her story which usually end up being hidden by YouTube and Google on the search pages they own. My take on it is that YouTube really doesn’t want to help her because then they’d have to address several issues on their platform that they don’t particularly seem to care about fixing. From what Meghan has shared, YouTube hasn’t made any effort to fix the problem or address it how Meghan wants it handled. Where it is right now is Meghan has asked to get her private/deleted videos back that the hacker removed and doesn’t really even care for the channel itself anymore. YouTube instead has decided what it interprets her clear request to mean is that she wants the channel with the current videos and the private/deleted videos will be gone forever. Clearly, YouTube doesn’t seem to have shown a real effort to help Meghan in anyway, and continues to drag their feet as I’m sure all they want is for her to give up and to stop posting about it as she’s really starting to gain a ton of attention on this issue.
Otherwise I can’t possibly pick a favorite this month! I’ve been loving all the YouTubers who have increased their uploading schedule with all the social distancing stuff going on with the intent to keep people occupied at home. How lovely!
Starting with Hogwarts Mystery! Finished the next chapter, where the kids decide to form, surprise, a secret society to depend themselves. Yeah, this is very unoriginal now and I will add Harry did this in his fifth year, so an entire year earlier than this group. As for Quidditch, Ava Samwise has started to train as a beater for her team, which is vastly more annoying than being a chaser. Oh! She did finally reach max friendship with Liz so now it’s just the twins and Hagrid left. And Cedric once he becomes available.
This month I played a bit of Rise of the Tomb Raider, which was pretty fun. I’m trying to get each section to 100% complete but it can be pretty tough! Even so, I’m slowly but surely getting there! The main story is done so I haven’t played it in awhile and I had totally forgotten that the soldiers were still around. I totally assumed that because I’d beaten the story they would have left because their side was defeated but there’s a few that didn’t get the memo and are still walking around. I was running around trying to find stuff I missed and thought they were friendlies but nope. Whoops! Luckily I got away and managed to get the item anyway but now I know to be more aware.
I did bake a bit! Because of the self-isolations I offered to bake a proper cake but my mom had a box cake that she requested instead. After being slightly offended at the request I did make the cake though and it was pretty good!
I did write a short story this month! I originally wrote it for a writing contest but the library where I was supposed to drop off the entry closed a few days before the deadline (for more self-isolation) so I wasn’t able to submit it. I’m hoping once everything opens back up that I’ll still be able to enter. Even so, it was really fun to write it and get back into that creative writing zone.
This month, since we couldn’t really do anything, I noticed I was being a lot less active than normal. I mean, I don’t regularly work out or anything but at the office I would walk around a lot more and such so even though I do work from home a few days a week normally, it was still a big change. Plus on weekends I normally do at least go on a Target run or something but since we were all cautioned to stay home and all my plans were cancelled, I decided to try some YouTube workouts. I did a Blogilates workout for total body toning which made me sooooo sore even though it was short. I also did a Ballerinas by Night ballet class on YouTube which was difficult due to the aforementioned soreness and the fact that I have carpet and no barre, but we powered through anyway with some chairs and a yoga mat. Both were fun!
I did go on a few nice walks this month! The first one was with my sister and my puppy niece! My sister came by to see us, bringing her beautiful little puppy with her. (This was super early in the month, I think literally March 1st, before everything went crazy where I live.) We took them out for a nice long walk, and the puppy was thrilled! She was a little scared of bikes though but she did enjoy being out with us. She was such a fun addition to the walk!
The second walk was just myself and the parents. We also had fun but I would have preferred to also have a puppy for that one too. Sorry not sorry.
Beauty – Make Up & Skin Care
I haven’t been wearing much make up since I’ve been working from home and haven’t really been out much lately! Even before we were asked to stay home I was mostly at home anyway because it’s full on winter still in northern Illinois so there’s limited options of what to do. Anyway, I do have a few beauty items, starting with the Sephora Rose Lip Balm. I love this balm as it’s so smooth and lovely! I also have been enjoying the Belif True Cream Moisturizing Bomb, which I got in an Influenster box free for review purposes. I have tried this product before from either another Influenster box or a subscription box and I do really like it as it’s really refreshing.
Here’s a few more items for the miscellaneous category! For hair, I have been enjoying the Ouai Leave in Conditioner, which I think I got in a past FabFitFun box before I cancelled my subscription. I don’t use it often, but my hair has been really prone to tangling lately so I use this to help brush it out! I also have been using my glasses cleaner a ton more, since I’m working from home and tend to wear my glasses more than contacts when I am at home. My glasses get so many smudges throughout the day (I think because my eyelashes are long so they brush against the lens) and so I use a cleaner that I got from my eye doctor and it’s amazing! For my body, I’ve enjoyed the Philosophy Nature in a Jar Cream-to-Water body lotion. I think I’ve mentioned this before in a favorites so it’s not new, I got it in an Influenster box as well, free for review purposes, and I do really like it as it doesn’t leave my skin with that weird slimy feeling that lotions seem to have. And, for some immune health boost I’ve been taking the Spring Valley Echinacea Dietary Supplement. I do tend to get sick, maybe not super easily but I feel like I do get sick more often than most people. Due to the virus concerns, I figured I may as well take this and try to boost my immune system as much as possible just in case! Even if I’m not leaving the house my parents do still go out for groceries or because they just don’t seem to understand that everything else is closed (they tried to go to the mall for goodness sake!) so I’d hate for them to accidentally bring it home and give it to me. Keep your fingers crossed they don’t!
I voted! Illinois had elections on March 17th, and my parents and I decided to go vote early. Our city hall always holds early voting in the weeks before an election so off we went! We were the only ones there when we arrived a little after 4 on a Thursday afternoon and then maybe 2-3 more people showed up after us so it wasn’t busy at all. I quickly voted (sadly my favorite candidates dropped out before I went to vote so I ended up voting for Bernie of all people… Sorry Julian, Cory, Beto, and Elizabeth) and then waited for my parents to be done outside of the room. Oh! And I got a sticker!
It’s Corona Time!
I literally can’t get that song out of my head since my new TikTok obsession kicked in. Anyway, I thought I’d include a few instances of how my life has been affected by the coronavirus. It really hasn’t been that bad but it has been quite disruptive, as I’m sure many others have experienced. Of course, I want to say that I 100% agree that preventative measures should be taken before I go any further.
Honestly, the virus has been quite disruptive in all aspects of my life. The first half of my month was completely different from the second half of the month. So much so that I started keeping a list of things I needed to check in on (to reschedule or change plans) once everything was back up and running since everything started to close down.
At work, a good number of projects I was actively involved in started getting cancelled, as I work in meetings & events. It was honestly heartbreaking because I knew my clients must have really struggled with that decision, especially because I see all the hard work they put in months or even years in advance of the show. Even so, they 100% made the right call to put the health and safety of each and every attendee first.
Along with some of my events being cancelled, so were personal plans with my sister in a Chicago museum as all museums were closed, musicals were postponed, libraries and park districts are also closed, and so are many smaller events too. All in all, it’s a small price to pay for our health but it was crazy that all these places were suddenly closed.
I also did end up not leaving my house honestly. My employer decided everyone should work from home fairly quickly and I was honestly thrilled because that’s my best case scenario. I love being home! #introvert Also this was great for not only my mental health (because I wasn’t stressed about potentially getting sick) but also for my wallet because I couldn’t go anywhere to shop.
Then some blog impacts! Since a lot of my upcoming posts were going to be about experiences I was planning on, I ended up being at a bit of a loss on what to replace those posts with. It especially left me with a ton more posts that I needed to come up with as the whole point of BirthMay is to blog every day, and I was already short on posts! But health over posts! I’m sure I’ll find something to blog (or should I vlog???) about for you guys so don’t you worry!
So, stay safe and healthy everyone! We’ll make it through!
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