Monday, June 18, 2018

What I've Been Up To And a Giveaway!!!


I'll start with the least juicy and most apologetic portion of this blog post. In other words, the part you'll rush through to get to the Big G-Word section towards the bottom. I know, I know. I said the word Giveaway in the heading...and now I'm going to ramble at you. But I've missed all of you!! And I'm going to pretend that all of you missed me also. So, I feel like I need to apologize for being MIA for almost a month, and tell you what's been going on in my life since we last chatted...you know, before I go giving you chances to win a big ole cache of booty.

The short answer is that we had a LOT of family come visit, and I've never been great at having a backlog of posts to keep me from falling off the wagon when my life gets busy.  If I were a great blogger, I would have a few posts a week written and ready to go before my life gets busy...and y'all would never even realize that anything different was going on. But time always seems to get away from me, and I actually enjoy spontaneously writing on here.

Not frozen...yet again

We first had some of my husband's family come for a visit, which was wonderful! We went out to eat every night...discovered it's very hard to find a frozen margarita in the DC area...and laughed more than we'd done in quite some time. Then my daughter came home from college, and brought a few friends home with her for a couple of days. I love visiting with her friends, and hope to meet some of their parents in September, so I can gush over how wonderful their kids are to them.

THEN, I had the best date night I've had with my husband in all of our years together...so since 1991 folks. I surprised him for his 45th birthday by taking him to see his favorite band, Trampled by Turtles, perform live in DC. He had no clue what we were doing. I booked an Uber, so he didn't even know what the building was when we were dropped off. It took a couple people walking by with band t-shirts on for him to realize! Y'all...it was AMAZING. I don't think I can properly paint a picture of the evening for you, so I'm not going to try...just know that I didn't stop smiling for weeks afterwards. I'm actually STILL smiling. If you've never heard of them, check out this video on YouTube and know that they kick ass live.

My Mother, Me and My Beautiful Daughter on my Birthday

After all of that excitement, my sister brought my mother here for a visit! Now, due to all sorts of different things ranging from me living in Europe and my mother's fear of being without her cigarettes on a long flight to North Dakota winters, my mother hadn't set foot in my house since 1993. A lot of things have changed in my decor and lifestyle since then...so I was incredibly excited to be able to spoil my mom for a few weeks. We had a great visit, and she was even here for my birthday!


And what a birthday it was!!! I have christened 43 to be my BEST YEAR EVER. It's started out with a bang...and I'm hoping to keep it going for the next 11 1/2 months. I have big plans for how I'm going to incorporate my best year into the blog, so be sure to stay tuned. The biggest thing to come out of this birthday was a new GUITAR!! I have christened her Stevie in honor of Stevie Nicks. She is meant to remind me of a certain aesthetic I'm trying to not necessarily cultivate, but remind myself that I love deep in my heart. Mellow Stevie...Stevie minus the coke habit. 😂 Do I know how to play the guitar? Not yet! But my beautiful husband bought me not only an Acoustic Fender, but 12 lessons from the music shop around the corner from my house...so I've been diligently practicing and I can tell you, typing with guitar sore fingers is no small feat. Am I going to give up blogging for guitar, like I joked I would in my interview with author Linda Smolkin on Facebook? Probably not. But I may need to buy my husband noise cancelling headphones.

OOH, and I couldn't write a "what have I been up to" blog post without saying that in the last year I've lost 65 pounds, and I just recently fit into another size smaller clothes!! I may have actually been able to go down two sizes in pants this time, but I'm so used to them being big on me that it's hard to get accustomed to snug jeans again. I didn't quite hit the goal I had in mind for my birthday. I missed it by 10 pounds. BUT, for the first time in a VERY long time, I'm significantly smaller than I was last year...and hopeful that I will be able to say the same thing next year. I'm truly excited to see what the future has in store for me.

My first transformation pic!

So now we get to the good stuff!!! Tomes and Tequila is 2 YEARS OLD!!! Can you believe it?!? It has morphed and grown, and doesn't really look like it did on day one. I have days when I wonder what I'm doing...days I wish I'd picked a different name...days I struggle with debating changing platforms and attempting to grow more...days I want to stop entirely. But I love that this baby is all mine, and I love that I have a few core readers who have been with me from the beginning...and new readers finding me all the time. I could make it easier by not disappearing for a month!! LOL Blogger 101 says you don't do that if you want to grow. But to celebrate the anniversary of my love child, I felt it was time to do another GIVEAWAY!! This time I'm giving away a little piece of everything that makes up Tomes and Tequila. 

I have a copy of The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid (which I've yet to read, but I have a copy too so we can read it together!!). 
I also have a copy of Stories I'd Tell in Bars by Jen Lancaster. It's hilariously funny, and you can see a video review I did for it on my YouTube channel over here!
I have a Peach Slices sheet mask because everyone loves a good sheet mask.
Then I have a Summer & Rose Palm Tree Beach Towel, and a Summer & Rose Crossbody Purse.
And lastly, since I sell Chloe + Isabel jewelry, I had to throw in a beautiful Minaret Necklace.

If you add all of that up, this is a damn nice giveaway...if I do say so myself!!


For the nitty-gritty details on this giveaway: I've decided I'm keeping it open to all locales. For you, I will search the deep recesses of my brain and remember how to fill out a customs form!! You'll have three opportunities to enter and the contest will be open until June 22nd at 9 pm EST ...and I'll be using an online random name picker to select the winner. Once the winner is selected, I'll announce them on the blog and social media. If your name has been picked, I'd ask that you email me or send me a DM on Facebook or Instagram with your address so I know where to send the items. 

All you need to do to enter is this....

Comment on this post what your favorite book of the year so far is for one entry...

and/or


Comment on my giveaway post on my Facebook Page with what your favorite birthday present EVER was for one entry...


and/or

Follow me on Instagram and like/comment on the photo of this giveaway with the name of a celebrity whose style you LOVE for one entry. 

That is THREE very easy chances to get your name in on this contest, and like I said, I'll dump all the names into a random online name picker to get our winner. 


Share the contest with friends if you wish to share the love! I just wanted to show my appreciation to my loyal readers, and thank all of you for sticking around for 2 years!! Enjoy...and I look forward to hearing your answers to the above questions. And remember, I've given you 3 chances to win, here on the blog, over on Facebook, and on Instagram!! Here's to having the #bestyearever and shouting about how #fortythreeislookingdamngood 😁💛💜


30 comments:

  1. I am embarassed to say that I have been reading nothing but kids' books. I recently started Endless Beach by Jenny Colgan
    and I am enjoying it so far. It was displayed at the local library and it just appealed to me because... well it is summer time and an endless beach sounded great to me :)

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    1. Don't be embarrassed to be reading kids books!! You have a little one at home!! She will grow up to be a HUGE reader, just like you. :) And endless beach sounds AMAZING.

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    2. My favorite book for me has been The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah. I wished I read more.

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    3. I need to post a book for July!! :)

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  2. I am going to have a tough time choosing a favourite book this year!! So many good ones but the last one I can remember is Girls’ Night Out.

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    1. I'll have to add that one to my list!!

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  3. I just finished Last Time I Lied by Riely Sager. Amazing! Love!

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  4. Ok so it isn’t a new book, but my favorite book so far this year is News of the World by Paulette Jiles. Sharon and I even got Julie to get it on audiobook for their trip this year.

    Kat

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    1. OOOH, a book that all 3 of you enjoyed?? I definitely need to add it to my to-read list.

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  5. Oh and do News of the World as an audiobook. The reader is fantastic!

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  6. My favorite book so far this year would be Finding Me by Michelle Knight. I don’t read autobiographies often but this one just shook me to what she had to endure.

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    1. I imagine that book would be very engaging.

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  7. My favorite book so far this year is I’ll Be Gone In The Dark by Michelle McNamara. If you like true crime, this one is for you!! I love it!

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    1. Oh boy!!! I'm deff going to get this next time I'm at the book store!!

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    2. I know how much you LOVED this one!!

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  8. Replies
    1. I have this one sitting on my shelf, and just haven't got to it yet!

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  9. “A Place for Us” by Fatima Farheen Mirza has been my favorite book this year so far - and I haven’t even finished it yet! It’s story has got me sucked in and the character development is rich!

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  10. I think my favorite book so far this year has been Dangerous Girls by Abigail Haas. It kept me guessing!!

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    1. Adding this one to my to-read list also!!

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  11. Sycamore Row by john Grisham. Its the sequel to a time to kill, without being a real sequel. I liked it. I'm currently reading the Whistler by john Grisham and my answer may change when I'm done with this one.

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    1. I went through a Grisham phase years ago, but it's been a LONG time since I've read one of his books!

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  12. Oh boy its soooo hard to pick just one �� this year I was blessed with a group of girls whom we each picked our favorite book and sent it to each other me of course I couldn't pick one and sent 3 different books.... but I loved every book they sent Nobodys baby but mine by Susan Phillip's was one and I was dying laughing thru it all. It was also used to tell us all she was pregnant with twins whoooooooo. Next was The Good Girl by Mary Kubica holly molly did this book have me guessing and twisting till the last page!!! The last book sent was Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher this was another one that had me guessing till the end. Lastly a book I read outside of the book trade j would say was my favorite was Orphan Train a novel by Christina Baker Kline it was my favorite because I had no idea about the orphan train and that here in North Dakota and Minnesota was a large part of this era. I was able to actually go to the Orphan Train museum in Minnesota where I learned a lot and enjoyed the history. All in all as you can see I have a serious issue picking 1 book :)

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    1. Well you notice I didn't say what my favorite of the year was! I struggle even picking a top 10 at the end of the year. I've heard so many good things about Orphan Train, and just haven't got to it yet. The Good Girl is sitting on my shelf also. :)

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  13. My favorite (so far) is Beneath a Scarlet Sky. Historical fiction set in Italy in WWII and fast paced. The protagonist is a young man who becomes the personal driver for Hitler’s right hand man in Italy. It’s really good!! Going to be made into a movie too!

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  14. I spent many a late night reading I'll Be Gone In The Dark. Actually lived near several of the murders in my teens. Very scary but very well written.

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