I’m Writing an eBook! {Reader Survey}

eBook-Survey-feat

eBook-Survey

… And I need your help! I have three topics in mind: Making Your Own Natural Beauty Products, Branding Your Indie/Handmade Business, or Getting Your Handmade Products into Retail & Online Stores. Which are you most interested in? I’ve created a super-quick survey that I would love for you to take. It’ll only take about 5 minutes.

>>> Take the survey here. <<<

Please be honest in your answers, and only take the survey once. Thank you so much for helping me out!

Photo Credit: Death to the Stock Photo.

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Friday Faves: Summer Reading

Summer Reading feature via @poorandpretty

What are you reading this summer? Here are a few things I’ve read & loved, am currently reading, or is on my to-read list:

Summer Reading via @poorandpretty

1. A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness. Currently reading and totally obsessed. I’ve actually begun waking up earlier so I can read this in the morning before I go to work. Also: shirking off household chores and other things I should be doing in order to read. It’s like a grown-up Twilight meets Charmed. I’ll likely finish the entire All Souls Trilogy this summer.

2. Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter. If I decide not to finish the All Souls Trilogy this summer — or if I finish them and am looking for something else — I’ll move on to Jess Walter’s Beautiful Ruins, which my Dad really liked and lent to me. Don’t you love sharing books with family members?

3. Game of Thrones, Book 1: A Song of Ice and Fire by George R. R. Martin. I’m not even sure I can handle this one, but my friend Anton gave it to me as a birthday present. It’s just so daunting! I’m current with the show, so I definitely don’t want to read past it, but something tells me this book would take me a while…

4. Love Walked In by Marisa de los Santos. I picked this one up years ago at a consignment shop, but I never read it until this winter. It’s a quick but lovely and heart-warming read told from the perspectives of a spirited 31-year-old woman and a 1o-year-old girl with a distant father and bipolar mother. It sounds like it would be depressing, but I promise it isn’t. I love Marisa de los Santos’ writing style – informal, as if you’re a friend she’s telling a (sometimes) long-winded story to. It’s very much how I tell stories. This is a great summer beach read!

5. Belong to Me by Marisa de los Santos. This is the follow-up to Love Walked In. It’s a little heavier (emotionally, but also physically because I mistakenly bought the large print edition, ha!) than the first and I liked Love Walked In better, but it’s worth a read if you want to know what happens to main characters Cornelia and Claire after Love Walked In

I’d love to hear what you’re reading and your recommendations for my next books, in the comments!

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links which may generate a revenue for Poor & Pretty when a purchase is made. You can read more about my affiliate link policies here.

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Friday Faves: Reads for Book Lovers Day

Favorite Reads for Book Lovers Day via @poorandpretty

I have a tendency to book jump. At any given time, I could be reading five or so books in various genres. Since tomorrow is National Book Lover’s Day, I thought I’d share with you a few of my recent favorites and current reads:

We Are Water by Wally Lamb: I have a special love for Wally Lamb because of shared personal experiences and will read everything he writes, so naturally I picked up his latest novel. I just started it, so I am only about 45 pages in. However, his very deep character development (which is so typically Wally) has already engrossed me and I hate putting the book down to go to bed, or eat, or work, or any of those annoying must-do’s that keep me from reading.

Make Me by Rhiannon Holte: I’ll admit it. I still read a ton of young adult literature. I’ve shared my love for The Hunger Games, The Perks of Being a Wallflowerand as with Wally Lamb, I’ll read everything by YA writers Francesca Lia Block and Ellen Wittlinger. Make Me is a wonderfully fresh young adult novel about a former child actress on the cusp of adulthood, determined to make her comeback after falling into the pit of drugs and alcohol. Like so many young celebrities, she takes some pretty drastic measures. She and a friend (the author, Rhiannon) create a website where her fans can suggest and vote on ways to “make Anya over.” Pretty quickly, it turns into a battle between Anya’s true and loyal fans versus the seedy underbelly of the Internet. It’s unlike any novel I’ve read and I am proud to be helping the author promote it.

I Spy DIY Style by Jenni Radosevich: Do you read the blog I Spy DIY? Like me, Jenni shares a love for DIY and unique fashion. While working at InStyle magazine, she developed a monthly do-it-yourself fashion column which eventually turned into her blog and this book! The book is filled with fantastic fashion tutorials for things you’ll actually wear. The tutorials range in skill level, from needing to know how to glue to sewing and using a grommet tool. It’s a great book to keep on hand for inspiration.

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green: I listened to the audiobook twice during my Road Trip; first on Day 7 as I drove down the Pacific Coast Highway and again on my last day, driving home. Then when I got home, I immediately demanded that Stan and I see the movie that weekend, which we did. The movie was cute, true to the book, but you’ve got to read the book. As I mentioned during my road trip, I was bawling my eyes out listening to the audiobook, narrated spectacularly by Kate Rudd. It’s a beautiful story about star-crossed young love and courage in the face of cancer. Unlike Nicholas Sparks’ A Walk to Remember, John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars is very real, raw, and does not shy away from the harsh reality and unglamorous side effects of imminent death. Having watched my Nana suffer from and eventually succumb to lung cancer when I was 11, I am all too familiar with the feelings of pain, empathy, and unconditional love that come with it. All I can do is thank John Green for really getting it and helping others to understand.

Eat Pretty by Jolene Hart: As a certified beauty and health coach, Jolene Hart knows beauty from an inside-out perspective. That is: outer beauty is more dependent on what we put into our bodies than what we slather on our skin. She dives into the right (and wrong!) foods to eat for skin cell renewal and repair, healthy and shiny hair, better sleep, a healthy metabolism, and more. The book also provides a list of where to get a healthy dose of carbs, fats, and proteins, and what to avoid. She even has chapters on what to eat during each season of the year, based on what is in season and of course shares a few healthy recipes. This is not a DIY beauty book, it’s more of a healthy lifestyle guide. And let me just say: I need to eat more fruits and veggies. Good thing we’re growing some!

P.S. You’ll notice that many of these links to not go to Amazon, but instead to Better World Books. This is because they have truly amazing charitable efforts such as Book for Book — every time you purchase a book, they donate one to a children’s literacy program. They also donate profits to Books for Africa, Room to Read, the National Center for Family Literacy, and other global literacy non-profits. They reduce landfills by never throwing away a book. They either find it a home or recycle it — to date, they’ve reused or recycled over 190 million pounds of books. AND in addition to free shipping worldwide, you have the option of carbon-balancing your shipment for pennies. So yeah, I kind of love them.

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links which may generate a revenue for Poor & Pretty when a purchase is made. You can read more about my affiliate link policies here.

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Friday Faves 4.19.13

to kill a mockingbird

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. I never read this in high school, so I swiped a battered copy from my uncle’s house a few summers ago and devoured it over the past few weeks. It’s amazing how relevant the book is today, and sad too. Racism hasn’t faded entirely from our society, but I think our generation’s big human rights issues focus more on sexuality, especially with regards to gay marriage rights.

to kill a mockingbird - color quote

Catching Fire movie trailer. Along the same vein — focusing on inequality, with particular emphasis on the wealth gap — is the Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins {a Connecticut native!}. The books are incredible – yes, they’re technically young adult novels but the message within them is perhaps even more important for adults. Plus, my dad was the first in my family to read them! Anyway, I was psyched to see the Catching Fire trailer launch at the MTV Movie Awards:

I’ll be there for the midnight showing, of course.

butterfly necklace

My “Iron Butterfly” necklace. Remember the tribute I wrote for my Nana last month? She used to call me an iron butterfly, beautiful and loving but also strong-willed. My Aunt Kathy saw this pretty necklace in a magazine and said she had to get it for me immediately. It’s a lovely reminder of the strong women in my life, and that we always have the power to reinvent ourselves.

solaris cardigan anthropologie - poor and pretty

Solaris Cardigan from Anthropologie. I love this new addition to my closet, especially since I got it for 50% off! I’m going through a major polka dot phase, and I love that this has sort of sporadic dots in different colors. The buttons remind me of my J.Crew cardigan hack. I’m wearing it today!

sunny afternoon herbal tisane - simpson vale

Sunny Afternoon herbal tisane from Simpson & Vale. My brother gave me this tea for Yule/Christmas, and even though it was on my list, I put off trying it because it smells like it would be way too sweet. I finally tried it a few months ago and now I’m addicted. It’s only slightly sweet, with strawberry leaves, cornflowers, and hints of vanilla and pear. I’ve found it’s perfect for dunking shortbread cookies in, and sipping while you’re enjoying a good book.

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links which may generate a revenue for Poor & Pretty when a purchase is made. You can read more about my affiliate link policies here.

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Friday Faves 7.1.11: Book Love

Happy July!

…It just occurred to me that I haven’t done a Friday Faves post in three months! Yikes! Today, I’m going to focus on literature. I’d say that summer is a time for me to read fun fictional novels {which is true}, but I also have this need to constantly be learning something new, so I always end up reading a few nonfiction books as well. Here are a few of the books I’ve been loving lately:

The Sugar Queen by Sarah Addison Allen — I’m not even a third of the way through this book, but I had to include it because it’s already becoming a favorite. I like the way Sarah Addison Allen writes sort of mysteriously, like she’s keeping things from the readers. I’m not always a fan of narrators that divulge everything about themselves within the first few pages. I also love that she blurs the lines between fantasy and reality. Another author that does this amazingly well is Francesca Lia Block {loooove her Weetzie Bat series}. Oh, and, in case you’re wondering about the “Advance Reading Copy” thing — we used to get these when I worked at Borders.

The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky — I read this in high school and just started re-reading it {I often read several books at a time, and read really great books several times}. I’ve been reading it to Stan because he’s too impatient to read a book himself, but I want him to experience Charlie like I did. You can’t help but immerse yourself in the pages of his fictional letters and want to give this naïve and intensely caring and generous boy lots of hugs. It’s really the best way I can describe the feeling I get from Stephen Chbosky’s book. I think there’s a little bit of Charlie in all of us. I’m slightly nervous about the upcoming movie though.

Green Beauty Recipes by Julie Gabriel — I love that Julie Gabriel, Founder of Petite Marie Organics, provides a resource for beginners who just want to make some simple one-ingredient beauty fixes and also tips for those of us who may ultimately sell our natural cosmetics. Unlike many of the other natural beauty recipe books out there, Gabriel discusses which ingredients to avoid and which preservatives are best for keeping cosmetics fresh without adding toxic chemicals to them. Overall, a really great DIY cosmetics book with lots of great recipes and information.

Hard Love by Ellen Wittlinger Hard Love is one of my favorite books of all time. I have recommended this book to — and sometimes even bought it for — so many people. I’m re-reading this one again, too. I usually re-read this every summer. It’s fiction, but it’s one of the truest, most heartbreaking young love stories I’ve ever read. I don’t want to give anything away, so I won’t say more than that.

What are you reading this summer?

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