What a wonderful article to read. Thank you so much for wanting to share the Cozy love! I have enjoyed getting to know you and meet you virtually!!! ❤️❤️❤️
There is a community that I belong to on YouTube called BookTube and it is phenomenal. BookTube is a community of people who are lovers of all things book related. The awesome thing is there are booktubers of every fashion, culture, and nationality. The community discusses every genre, events, authors, book reviews, book haul, book unhaul, and so much more. It is an amazing community and you can get so much information.
I would like to take a moment and introduce you to one of my favorite Booktubers. Her name is Courtney, but you will come to know her as Courtagonist. She joined BookTube in June of 2017 and her channel is based on cozy mysteries. Every now and then she will discuss something non-cozy, but her channel is mainly cozy mysteries. Cozy mysteries are stories that feature small towns, amateur sleuths, the sex and violence is very downplayed…
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Date Night In has knocked it out of the park AGAIN this month! Seriously. I love the ideas that they keep coming up with. This month was all about building a foundation of love. This was a PERFECT date night in with Aaron because he has an engineer mindset. These kind of activities are just what he loves and it is fun for me as well! Let’s get into this!
As always they have an amazing set of recipes for the night. I never make it to the grocery store to actually make these amazing dishes BUT I do keep them in my recipe drawer to keep on the back hand just in case. They also have a curated playlist that you can choose to play throughout the date night as well that helps put you and your partner in the mood.
This was so much fun! It hit both Aaron and I’s loves. His for building and making things and mine for saying sweet things to him. You wrote down on the sticks what makes the foundation of your relationship and then built a tower!
The next building task was building a platform out of toothpicks and jellybeans. In this activity we worked together to build a platform for our Date Night In Box to rest on. This was a lot of fun and hard not to eat all of the jelly beans! Haha! Everything that you build during this date will be used later on! So make sure that you try your absolute best!
The next challenge is to be able to build a strong structure with straws, jelly beans, and tape. You want to make the tallest structure that you can. Make a strategy together and make sure you both agree. This is a TEAM effort!
Challenge three was all about taking all of the structures you built and put them together to make a love tower. Get out your measuring tape and see how tall the structure is that you made! How sturdy it is!!!!!
This was an absolute blast and I can’t wait to see what Date Night In comes up with for the month of February! The month of love!!!!!
This box is something that I would purchase every single month. With how much dinner and a movie costs well into $50-70 for a date night out, this box is fantastic in cost savings and brings you closer to your significant others.
I can’t wait to receive next month’s box. It’s makes me giddy just thinking about what the Date Night In crew is putting together for February.
Until next time…
The Simple Loose Leaf Tea Company is one of the best and affordable tea subscription boxes! They normally send you 4 different teas, 2 with caffeine, and 2 without. This is perfect for the next cold night that you want tea but you’re close to your bedtime and you are wanting something that wont keep you up too long. Another aspect of this Classic Tea Box is the fact that they send you 4 reusable linen tea bags every month!
From Simple Loose Leaf Company:
“Each month you’ll get a box filled with teas ranging from classically savory to enjoyably trendy, you’ll get terrific, members’ only discounts for our tea shop, and you’ll get everything you need to make that perfect cup of tea.”
What You’ll Get:
For only $9 a month! That is a steal!
So without further ado, let’s get into January’s Tea Box!
There is nothing better than an amazing black tea. This one is clean and dark and there is a subtle sweetness to it as well. Something that hits the right spot when you need it! They talked about the note of apricot and peach as well. It made me think of the coming months of Spring and Summer time!
This was probably my absolute FAVORITE tea in this month’s box. I love the color of it. The aroma was perfectly citric and sweet. I can see this as a perfect tea for a cool night or made as a cold brew as well! I love this so much and can see myself getting it more and more!
Jasmine tea is one of my hands down favorite types of tea that I drink throughout the year. I love the calming effect of it. There is just something about jasmine that brings a relaxing and calming mood on my tense shoulders and clinching jaw. This tea is primarily grown between 4,500 and 7,500 feet. It has 15X the natural antioxidants that blueberries have! This is great for this time of year when noses start running!
This is a new green tea out of Columbia. It has a sweet and nutty flavor! The liquid is beautifully bright yellow and brings a smile onto your face when you look at it. I love that since this tea was new to the wonderful people at Simple Loose Leaf they suggested to steep it at different levels of heat and it various ways. I love that!
This has been another lovely tea box! I love the new design to the box as well. It made me smile the moment I retrieved it from my mailbox. You really couldn’t get a better tea box for the price of $9.00 a month. I high recommend you try it out!
As always Ellie Alexander has left my heart fluttering and my mouth watering! This was the 8th book in The Bakeshop Mystery series featuring the amazing baker Jules Capshaw.
She has a lot on her plate during this book! A wedding to plan, an expansion of her bakeshop Torte, her feelings for her estranged husband, and trying to be there for her friends.
To top it off someone has a grudge towards Jules herself and tries to poison her! This book had me laughing, it had me tearing up, and falling in love with the characters over and over again.
Ellie has a way with her characters, she brings them alive. She is able to weave words of meaning, feeling, and scrumptiousness like The Bard himself! I recommend this series to anyone who loves coffee, friends, family, and a good mystery! You will find yourself lost in the world of the characters trying to figure out the ‘whodunit’. This book had me on my toes the whole time guessing and I loved every second of it!
A book that was extremely helpful to me would have to be, “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F**K”. This book really helped me see how I was allowing certain things to go on in my life when I needed to bring about change inside of myself before I could do anything else within my life.
I really enjoyed the overall message. It has been quite a while since I have read it and I think I need to buy it in physical form so that I can highlight and mark up my favorite pages and places.
There is something to say about a really good self-help book. I would normally not read these types of books, but I believe that Mark Manson was extremely clever in naming this book because that is what brought me into reading it.
2. The Return Bin: What are two books you read and immediately wanted to return (bc you disliked) or a recent DNF
I recently finished my Book of the Month Club book “And Then She War Gone” by Lisa Jewell. I had really thought that I was going to enjoy this book. I had it in my head that it was going to be just as wonderful of a read as “The Broken Girls” by Simone St. James.
I couldn’t have been more far from the truth. This book was nothing that I expected nor was it a book that I enjoyed. It made me feel incredibly uncomfortable and kind of dirty reading it. I know that I will be unhauling it soon to someone else or another place.
Another book that I will not be re-reading again would have to be “Don’t Look Down”, by Jennifer Crusie. I read this in the middle of the summer last year and I was so excited about it. Jennifer Crusie was one of my most favorite authors and I thought that I had read everything that she had written.
So when I found this book at my local used bookstore, Gardener’s, I was so thrilled that I couldn’t wait to get home to read it. I read it in about two days and I was livid. I couldn’t believe that Crusie had written such a weak-willed female protagonist. She waited for the guy to rescue her. It actually sickened me. I was steaming. The only reason I haven’t unhauled the book is that I love having all of Jennifer Crusie’s books on my shelves, but I will not be rereading it.
3. Holds Section: Your most anticipated release, which you can’t wait to get your hands on?
A release for this June that I CANNOT wait to read would have to be Ellie Alexander’s “Till Death Do Us Tart”! I am eager for this next installment of the Bakeshop Mystery series to come out.
They are planning the biggest and more intricate wedding in Ashland and I couldn’t be happier. To be able to see two of my most favorite people finally tying the knot is something that puts the biggest smile on my face. I am so excited about this!
4. Community Classes & Study Rooms: A book you loved that was a school assignment.
I would have to say the book that had my heart in my throat and one that made me fall in love with reading even more is “Fahrenheit 451”, by Ray Bradbury. The whole entire idea of a firefighter being the one to start a fire and to destroy knowledge and imaginary worlds always left me aghast.
I recently found out that they are going to be doing a movie or a short show series on it. I think that it is going to be brilliant. To take something that is regularly quoted, read, and extremely relevant during these ‘fake news’ times.
5. Computers: A modern classic you love, or favorite sci-fi.
Oh goodness! A modern class OR a favorite sci-fi?! How about BOTH!? I would have to say that “Frankenstein”, by Mary Shelley would have to be one of my all time favorites.
I had to read this book for the first time for my Science Fiction By Women course at Northeastern State. Before this course I did not know that a woman had actually been the first person to write a science fiction novel. I thought that this was a brilliant light bulb over my head.
Though this book was harder to read because of the changes in the English language over the past century it was still just as compelling and fascinating as it was then.
6. DVD Rentals: Your most anticipated, or favorite in recent history, book-to-move or book-to-tv adaptation. OR! a book that felt cinematic or a book you wish would be adapted into a movie or TV series.
Hmmm. I think that if I had to choose a series that would be put into a TV series I would have to choose Anne Bishop’s Black Jewel series. I feel like the magic system, the characters, and the feel of the series would work well with most audiences. I would also just like to see the world alive on the screen. This is one of my favorite book series that I have read. I believe that I own all of them.
“The Dark Kingdom is preparing itself for the fulfillment of an ancient prophecy–the arrival of a new Queen, a Witch who will wield more power than even the High Lord of Hell himself. But this new ruler is young, and very susceptible to influence and corruption; whoever controls her controls the Darkness. And now, three sworn enemies begin a ruthless game of politics and intrigue, magic and betrayal, and the destiny of an entire world is at stake”
7. Library Book Store/Sale: A random book you picked up (w/o knowing anything about) and really enjoyed, or show off your fave bookish merch!
When I was at Comic-Con in the Summer of 2016 I was walking around the HUGE section of books, comics, graphic novels, and all of the bookish goods. I was walking around and found this colorful and vibrant booth and I was instantly brought to it.
This is where I found Lumber Janes and The Backstagers! I originally purchased the Lumber Janes volume one (which is also my very first video and review on my booktube channel). Right before I walked away from the book I saw The Backsttagers and I was immediately brought it.
Ilove the colors, how playful the boys looked, and the fact that it involved the theater as well. I had to get the first issue. I was so happy that I did. Just in the first comic I was brought in with the friendships that were made, the crushes that were blooming, and the fun aspect of what was hidden in the theater. I highly recommend this series.
8. Teen/Youth Room: Favorite YA or favorite book you read as a kid. OR: A book you can’t wait to share with your future kids/nieces/nephews
A series that I can’t wait to show my nephew, Michael-Scott, would have to be the Among the Hidden series by Margaret Peterson-Haddix. This series revolves around a farming family and their secret. The world has changed. There was a drought and a shortage of food. Due to this everyone in the United States was limited to two children. Third children were illegal and were even killed if they were born.
We follow Luke Gardner. The hidden third child. This series follows Luke’s trials and tribulations of understanding why his family hid him to understanding the this wasn’t right and all third children should be free.
I read all seven books of this series to my 5th grades for five years. They loved it so much that I can’t wait to see if my nephew will love them as well!
9. Museum Tickets: A book that made you feel a bit more cultured upon completing it.
That would have to be my very first Agatha Christie book, “And Then There Were None”. I don’t normally read a lot of classical books or books that people would consider cultured. I tend to read for fun and for relaxation. But I felt extremely good about myself after reading “And Then There Were None”. I felt as though I was apart of something more. All of those amazing people who can read classical books and enjoy it.
It helped that Agatha Christie is considered the mother of the Cozy Mystery genre. It was easier for me to get into the book. I have a vlog of when I went to New Orleans and I have live reactions to this book. It was marvelous. I couldn’t figure out the ‘whodunit’ and I loved that!
10. Overdrive/Hoopla: An audio book you love.
An audio book that I ABSOLUTELY love would be “Ready Player One”, by Ernest Cline. Will Wheton is the one who reads the book aloud and it was brilliant. I loved having him talk about all of the things that he grew up with.
You could hear the humor in his voice when he was mentioned in the book. He really helped bring the book alive AND made it seem as though we were in the 80s as well as the future!
11. Request a Purchase: A lesser known book that you want more people to know about and read.
I don’t know if you would call this a lesser known book since it has been made into a movie, but I really loved reading Douglas Adams’, “Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy”.
I read the Ultimate Edition during my senior year in high school. It had all five books in one huge, heavy, and hard to edition. It was totally worth it. I loved the quirky characters. I loved the way everything was tied together and how crazy the plot was.
I really believe that this series should have been more than just one movie. While the movie is good and is quoted quite frequently I really feel that they did not do justice to the book. They needed to add more of the adventures and the character development to the characters for the audience to really understand everything about them.
12. Librarians: A character who loved helping others.
A character that was extremely helpful and alway giving of themselves is Aang from “Avatar the Last Airbender”. I know that technically it started out as a TV show on Nickelodeon, but I have fallen in love with the comics/graphic novels that have come out.
Especially “The Search” when you finally find out what happened to Zuko’s mom. This show pulled at all of my heart strings and emotions.
I love the friendship that turns into family in this series. Aang has the biggest heart out of all of them and it always warms my soul to watch and read about these characters.
13. Sanctuary: A book that is your safety net/is like home to you/helped you through a rough time.
This is without a doubt a cliche answer. However, this is the only answer I really have. Harry Potter. That series got me through hell. My mom was sick for a very long time. An extremely long time. I didn’t think I would ever get my mom back from everything that the doctors put her through.
But, this series was our saving grace. Even when she was so sick we had something to talk about when it came to books. She would keep me home when a new book came out and we would talk about it. We would go see the midnight releases when the movies or new books came out.
I believe that the love of Harry Potter kept my family together when everything else was falling apart. So, even though this might be everyone’s answer. This is mine.
1. Find a book for each of your initials.
Cat Trick By: Sofie Kelly
Death is Like A Box of Chocolates By: Kathy Aarons
Murder By the Glass By: Michele Scott
2. Pick a book that is set in your city/town.
This would have to be a book based in the same state that I live in and a city that is close to Broken Arrow. That would have to be Ready Player One By: Ernest Cline. It starts out in The Stacks in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.
3. Pick a book that represents a destination you would love to travel to.
That would have to be Meet Your Baker or A High-End Finish. Both are based in the Northwest and I really want to visit that side of the country. In books and pictures it seems absolutely gorgeous. I want to be able to see the mountains and lakes on my own!
4. Pick a book that is your favorite color.
The book that is the closest to my current favorite color would have to me Pleating for Mercy By: Melissa Bourbon! It’s a beautiful Pinkish Red color. I don’t know how to describe it!
5. Which book do you have the fondest memories of?
The book to which I have one of the more fondest memories of would have to be Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. This series brought my family closer together and I love it for it. We would read the books together at night and finish them together. That is one of my most happiest memories.
6. Which book did you have the most difficulty reading?
The book that I had the most difficulty reading would have to have been Love Song to the Plains by Mari Sandoz. It was written in 1961. I read this for my Women’s Fiction course for my Masters degree in American Studies with an emphasis in Native American and Women’s Studies. This book was just difficult for me to relate to due to the language and lack of understanding of the time period I believe. It was also a dry read for me.
7. What book in your TBR pile will be the biggest accomplishment to read?
I think one of the series that I would feel most accomplished reading would be to the Darker Shade of Magic Trilogy. I read through the first one with great speed and I loved it. Then I dived into this new year with all of the cozies. I think I need to take some time to finish the series. That would make me feel wonderful.