Um…I’m not sure how a summer song about favorite things turned into a Christmas song, but thankfully it’s one song (Christmas or not) that doesn’t get old for me. And, because I love sharing favorite things, I thought it’d be fun if we shared a list of our favorite things. 🙂 (But don’t expect me to rhyme them or turn them into a song because I can’t. do. poetry. to. save. my. life.)
My Favorite Books From 2015
I’ve read 49 books this year (and am hoping to reach 50 by the end of the year) — a new record for me! But of those, here are the books that blew my mind and I adored. (Tweet this)
- An Ember in the Ashes — Amazing. Incredible. World-building at its best (though more violent than the usual books I read, so you’ve been warned.) (Read my review on Goodreads.)
- The Selection — it’s like a chick-flick wrapped up in a dystopian princess book. I picked this series up when I was in the exact right mood to read it. And…I read all of them in two days. O.o (Read my review on Goodreads.)
- The Bloodheart — People. PEOPLE. Read this fantasy brilliance. The writing is perfectious. (Totally a word.) *whisper* And the Kindle version is free on Amazon right now! (Read my review on Goodreads.)
- Illuminae — I’m still having withdrawals over this book. Disclaimer: it’s kind of creepy. I totally didn’t expect that going in to it. But it’s so unique I just couldn’t. put. it. down. (Read my review on Goodreads.)
- Winter — the perfect conclusion to a series as close to perfect as is out there in the YA genre. If you haven’t started the Lunar Chronicles (book 1 is Cinder), you should do it NOW! Especially since the series is complete. (I was lazy and didn’t review it on Goodreads…because all I would have done was gushed..)
- Darkness Reigns — Jill Williamson’s newest release. She’s such an incredible author and one of those who lands on my “I’ll-read-anything-this-person-writes-EVER” list. *whisper* Also free on Amazon right now! (Read my review on Goodreads.)
Favorite Foods from 2015
You’d think, being an author, I don’t get time to cook.
Well…you’d be right!
But I love to cook, so I neglect my little paper babies every now and then and create edible masterpieces! (At least, I like to pretend they are, even when the meals resemble weird creatures from fantasy novels.) I also traveled a ton this year, so I got to try new foods everywhere. These were my favorites.
- Homecooked — I love making artisan bread. I make a parmesan cheese loaf that is to die for (not to toot my own horn…because all I do is follow a recipe, so really it’s the recipe-maker’s horn I’m tooting.) But this one takes serious commitment since it takes 24-hours to make, shape, let rise, bake, cool, etc.
- From Russia — I loved their Pelmeni. It’s kind of their version of ravioli but way better. I’ve cooked it at home before, but when I went to Russia they cooked the pelmeni in chicken broth and you eat it with sour cream. I know you’re wrinkling your face right now, but I DON’T CARE BECAUSE IT’S AMAZING! Come to my house. I will make it for you.
- From My State — Hubby and I discovered a sushi restaurant about an hour and a half away from us. We love sushi and our best friend — Daniel Russo — makes the best sushi EVER. For realz. He’s a sushi chef and we’ve been spoiled. So when he’s gone (and we’re weeping for hours on end), we’re left to scrounge among other little weak sushi restaurants trying to satisfy our cravings. We found one that’s at least better than the grocery store sushi, and that’s become a new regular for us (when Daniel’s not here. *more weeping*)
Favorite TV Shows/Movies from 2015
This year, hubby and I started replacing movie nights with TV shows. We don’t have television, so we watch what’s available on our computers at night together. We ran out of good movies and stepped foot into TV show world. We like it, but we’ve thus far managed to never binge-watch (and hopefully never will) anything. These TV shows and movies were my favorites that I discovered (or that released) in 2015:
- Merlin — Oh Merlin. That’s all I can say. I fell. in. love. with this show — or better said: with Merlin’s character. He became a friend to hubby and me and we loved every single episode in all five seasons…until the last one. It ended so wrong. That’s all I’m saying. I won’t give spoilers, but it was seriously the worst decision a director could have made. Okay. Done. Aside from that horribleness, Merlin climbed right up next to Harry Potter in my book. (And if you know me, you know that’s saying a lot.)
- Robin Hood — It’s so cheesy and ridiculous and the third season is just dumb with an even dumber ending but…we loved it. 😀
- Cinderella — I don’t care that people say her waist was too small. I don’t care that it’s the most over-done fairytale ever. I LOVED CINDERELLA SO MUCH. *goes to watch it right now*
- Avengers: Age of Ultron — Hubby and me…we’re Marvel fans. And we like the Avengers. ‘Nuff said.
- Inside Out — This movie just reminds me of why I adore Pixar. (We shall not speak of The Good Dinosaur.) I loved the realness of Riley’s inner journey. Stuff I thought would be weird or boring wasn’t. Oh, and I cried.
Favorite Music I Discovered in 2015
- Explosions in the Sky — I knew about them, but didn’t really listen to them like a rabid psycho until 2015. 😛
Favorite Moments from 2015
- Hubby-ness — Learning to love Hubby even better. Seriously…I have the best hubby in the world and he’ll always be a favorite moment.
- Crossing the Panama Canal — My Dad took me through the canal in his sailboat. I was the sea cook again (but no seasickness!) and I did endless book research for A Time to Speak.
- Winning the ACFW Carol Award — (I seriously tear up every time I think about it.)
- Realm Makers! — The Realm Makers Conference was amazing and I finally finally got to go! That will forever be one of my best memories. Already missing everyone.
- Traveling to Russia. — I mean, I wrote three blog posts about it. (One, Two, Three) This was probably the most incredible moment of 2015…and hubby and I went together. 😀
- New Friendships. I made so many new friends this year, and it fills me with complete joy. I connected with a word warring buddy (Katie!) and an Instagram friend who keeps me smiling (@taylorreads), and finally met up with the lovely Mary Weber at ACFW and can’t get enough of her sweet soul. (That kind of sounds like a freaky paranormal-book statement, but I mean it in the best possible way. 😛 )
I really just want to keep going — favorite snacks, favorite surprises, favorite adventures, even the moments that were awful during 2015 but God dragged me through them and I came out even more firmly wrapped in His arms.
But I’ll stop for now, because I’m liable to explode from all the nostalgia. What were some of your favorite reads/foods/movies/moments from 2015? (Tweet this)