I’m SO late to the party with these Wrap Up’s (especially the November one haha), but I figured better late than never! I decided to just combine both months, since a lot of what I got up to in November (Wedding, Honeymoon etc) I’ve already posted about… and honestly I didn’t read very much that month. The first half of the month was full of everything Wedding Planning. Picking up suits, organizing details, and just so much stress. I had NO idea what was coming though. Also Ryan went on his surprise Bachelor Party! I knew all the details, but was SWORN to secrecy, and keeping these secrets was the hardest thing I’ve EVER done. His amazing Best Man planned a Stag Weekend, that was like something out of a movie. They picked Ryan up in a Limo Friday afternoon, and drove him to a private airport, right onto the tarmac.. to a PRIVATE JET! Ryan was so shocked, he was speechless. They flew to Vegas for two nights.. stayed in the Penthouse at the Bellagio, and basically lived out the plot of “The Hangover”. My Dad and Brother in Law Luke, went as well. It sounded like the WILDEST trip ever, and I’m so glad he made it home alive.. and without a facial tattoo.
Over the last two weeks of November I was dealing with some major dental surgery issues, and was bed-ridden. I have never felt pain so severe in my entire life, it felt like my entire head and face was on fire. I couldn’t sleep, or eat much. In a sick way, at least this was ALL I could focus on, and I actually wasn’t stressing too much about the Wedding. I couldn’t have gotten through it without Ryan, he was awake with me all night.. calling Emergency Dental clinics, etc. What would I do without him? Thank GOD my face managed to de-swell before our Wedding. Getting emergency Dental Surgery 48 Hours before I had to walk down the aisle, was VERY stressful to say the least. Thankfully my amazing Bridesmaids saved the day, and helped me with all my last minute Wedding errands. Also a huge thank you to my Maid of Honor and amazing Sister, for taking me for a mani-pedi the night before the Wedding, and making me feel all cute again. We left on our Honeymoon right after the Wedding as well, and I was so sick the week before, we were both convinced we would have to cancel our trip. Thankfully my incredible Dentist quite literally SAVED the whole Wedding, and I managed to have two pain-free weeks in Mexico! I couldn’t be more grateful, and I feel like I need to bring him a present next time I see him haha.
December was a whirlwind of a month for us! We got home from our Honeymoon in the middle of the month, and it was like a Christmas explosion when we got back to the city. We had so many boxes all around the house from the Wedding, as well as unpacked suitcases piled up. We jumped right back into work as soon as we got home, and it was all so hectic we actually never even got around to getting our Christmas Tree out of storage! However, I did find a really cute little table-top tree from Chapters, and it did the trick.
Next thing we knew it was Christmas Holidays, and that was a blur of family, turkey, and so much love (and so many new books). I have so many fun photos of our Christmas Eve, Christmas Day Trip to the Island, as well as New Years Eve.. I will have to do a separate Blog Post all about the Holiday’s. If I add them to this post, it will be WAY too long (and my Blog’s are already long enough haha).
I hope you all had an amazing Holiday Season & New Year. Looking forward to making tons of exciting new content for you guys in 2019. Thanks again for all your support last year, it was a great year.
And now for the November/December Wrap Up
1.) “Train to Busan”
A South Korean Zombie Horror Masterpiece
This is honestly maybe one of the Top 5 most horrifying cinematic experiences, of my entire life. I was NOT expecting this to be so SO hard-hitting, emotional, shocking, deeply terrifying… and just AMAZING. Ryan and I randomly threw this on, after I saw a girl recommend it on her Instagram Story. It’s a sub-titled movie, so it needs your full attention when you watch. I am so glad for this, because sometimes I get distracted by my phone, or dinner etc.. but I was fully immersed in this one.
This is essentially a zombie-apocalypse story, set in the most claustrophobic awful sitting. TRAPPED on a train, with ZOMBIES. The intensity of this movie, as well as the fast stressful pace.. was unreal. It felt like you were first hand experiencing this horrific event. It was even a bit funny in parts, which was a nice break from the intense stress of the other 98% of it. This movie is a bit hard-to-watch, and quite gory.. but if you are into Zombies you will adore this twisted little tale.
2.) “Mary Poppins Returns”
Such a happy fun-loving musical, starring Emily Blunt and Lin-Manuel Miranda (Hamilton) and also my biggest celebrity crush Colin Firth.. AND the iconic Meryl Streep!
This movie was just delightful. It’s been probably like 20 years since I’ve seen the original “Mary Poppins”, but I remember the whole idea pretty well. Also all of the songs are so timeless, and impossible to forget. I was so excited when I saw that Disney was coming out with a sequel, starring the amazing Lin-Manuel Miranda (from the smash Broadway Musical “Hamilton”), and Emily Blunt. Also I am borderline obsessed with Colin Firth, and he is honestly still as handsome as ever. Best part of the movie hands down.
This was a BIG movie. Every scene was huge, with so many colors, so many props, dancers, extras… and just things to SEE. It was so wildly imaginative, and I think kids will really love this one. Adults too! The song “Trip a Little Light Fantastic” was my favorite part of the movie (other than Colin), and the whole scene just made me smile so big. I left the theater feeling so happy, and it was such a fun little film. Also I had NO idea Emily Blunt was such an incredible singer?!
3.) “The Hate U Give”
An incredibly powerful film, based on the hugely successful YA Book
This movie is based on the book “The Hate U Give” by Angie Thomas. I read the book as well recently, and was just blown away by the devastating subject matter. This movie was very intense, and a really hard to watch experience.. but it was so powerful and beautifully shot.
This is the story of a young girl named Starr, who is driving home from a party with her childhood best friend, laughing and joking about Harry Potter. They are pulled over by a police officer, and not sure why. Things get out of hand quite quickly, and Starr witnesses her best friend being fatally shot, while unarmed. This scene was incredibly horrific and VERY hard to watch. This also isn’t a spoiler, it’s in the trailer, and happens right at the beginning of the novel. This is the story of how she fights back, how she finds her voice.. and gets the courage to stand up for what she believes in. It also challenges all types of stereotypes, and misconceptions young people are dealing with these days. I found this movie so powerful, and one of the best I’ve seen in years. Amanda Stenberg, who plays Starr was just outstanding.
Currently Streaming on Netlfix
A twisted little horror movie about a Webcam girl, who has her identity stolen/is cloned/is being pranked?! Who knows. You should find out!
This movie was CRAZY, and is so underrated. I can’t believe everyone isn’t talking about this right now! You should literally run to your Netflix account right now, and add it to your “To Watch” list. I was immediately drawn to this, because I really loved Madeline Brewer in “The Handmaids Tale”, and “Orange is the New Black”. She is BRILLIANT in this movie, and just commanded the screen the entire time.
How to even describe this bizarre movie? It’s basically about a Webcam Porn Star, who is currently climbing the ranks… and doing very well. She dreams about getting into the “Top List”, and watches herself climb closer and closer, after doing some truly shocking and outrageous things on camera. I SCREAMED out loud watching some of them!
Soon after she beings to get more popular, she comes to a really twisted discovery. There is another LIVE account on the site, with a girl on it.. who looks EXACTLY like her. It’s her face, her room, her props…. but it’s LIVE! Who is this girl? How is this happening? Soon she is locked out of her own account, and what takes place after this is actually insane.
This movie does a really great job of integrating our current instant-feedback technology into the movie’s format. We see the comments the people are making on her videos, we see her texts, we see almost everything from a way that makes it feel as though you are watching/living through her eyes. It was creepy as HELL. It makes you feel unsettled in a bizarre detached way. I can’t recommend this enough.
5.) “Life Itself”
Directed by the mastermind behind the sappy-genius show “This is Us” & “Crazy Stupid Love”.
The trailer for this movie was one of the sappiest things I’ve ever seen. If any of you have ever seen the T.V show “This is Us”, this movie is just like that.. but more depressing (if that’s possible). It’s done by the same Director, so I think this is kind of his thing.
This is the story of a young couple, who meet and fall in love. The movie is divided into a few different parts, and each part explores a different time period in these characters lives.. and the lives of the people around them. It all weaves, and connects together.. in a depressing “trying to make you cry” way (which it did). I enjoyed it, but wasn’t as blown away as they were probably going for. I found it a bit heavy handed and cliche. I do really love Oscar Issac (who was amazing in this), as well as Homeland’s Mandy Patinkin. Also I have a major crush on Olivia Cooke, after seeing her in “Me Earl and the Dying Girl”, so I 90% watched this for her haha.
7.) “The Miseducation of Cameron Post”
Based on a Book, Starring Chloe Grace Moretz (who I love)
I absolutely adored this movie. Chloe Grace Moretz is such an amazing actress, and I have loved most of her movies. I’ve never read this book, but after watching this I’m thinking I need to pick it up.
This movie is about a young girl named Cameron, growing up in 1993. She is being raised by her very religious Aunt. On prom night, Cameron’s boyfriend catches her kissing another girl.. and he freaks out and tells her Aunt. Cameron’s Aunt decides to send her away to a Conversion Camp called “God’s Promise”, hoping to cure her of her urges. The fact that something like this camp exists in real life, I find absolutely disgusting. What is wrong with the world?
God’s Promise turns out to incredibly troubling, and Cameron hates it there immediately. She ends up befriending two other amazing kids, and they form a little alliance of sorts. This movie is the story of Cameron finding herself, and accepting herself for who she is. It’s a really great coming-of-age story, with a really amazing message at it’s heart. It’s a bit of a troubling watch, and I should note trigger warnings for some issues of abuse and self harm.
1.) “The Cry”
A 4 Part BBC Mystery Mini-Series Based on a Book
Starring Jenna Coleman (Doctor Who)
You guys know I love a good British Drama, and this might be the best one I’ve seen yet. “The Cry” is a 4 Part Series, and each part is crazier than the last. The TWISTS in this shocked me! I am not going to tell you anything about this at all, because the spoiler potential is too great. I will try to sum it up in one non-spoiler sentence…. It’s about a young couple, who travel to Australia to visit family.. and their newborn Son vanishes! I will not say another word. Brilliant mystery, and such a wild ride. Also Jenna Coleman is the most beautiful woman in the world.
Another BBC Drama
Currently Streaming on Netflix
I watched this on our Honeymoon, and only because I randomly Downloaded the first season to watch on the plane. I saw it was a BBC thriller, and I had to have it. Honestly, BEST decision I made that whole trip. I had heard NOTHING about this, and it blew me away. The BBC are just killing it these days.
This is such a tightly wound mystery, with so many layers. It blurs the lines between reality and magical realism, in a really exciting way. The story starts out with a young cellist Matilda, who’s mother dies in a very tragic suicide. She goes to her Mother’s home to go through some of her things, and finds a box layed out on her bed… FULL of news clippings about a young girls kidnapping, in a small Welsh village, about 20 years ago. Matilda is curious if this is the reason her Mom took her life, and if so.. why? She takes her close friend/musical partner/friend-zoned friend Hal with her, and they travel to the village to find answers. Trust me, you will NOT expect what comes next.
I really loved everything about this, and every night of our Honeymoon I was SO excited to crawl into bed and watch an episode. I’m so sad that it’s over.
1.) “Bird Box”
By, Josh Malerman
“It’s better to face madness with a plan than to sit still and let it take you in pieces.”
This. Was. Terrifying. I know the Netflix version of this book has just come out, and I will be reviewing it for you in my “January Wrap Up”. Let me just say, the Book and the Movie are very different. It’s the same basic plot, but a lot doesn’t make it to screen, and the story was given the “Hollywood Ending” for sure. The book was much darker, much more terrifying, and much bleaker.
“And what scares you more? The creatures or yourself, as the memories of a million sights and colors come flooding towards you?”
This is the perfect blend of an End-Of-The-World Dystopian Horror Story & a Drama. It’s so realistic and real, that you feel like something like this could ACTUALLY happen… and that is horrifying. The scariest thing about this book, is the way it weaves tension into it’s plot. This book is quick, heated, intense, and SO claustrophobic. In the movie, you get to SEE how it all looks.. but in the book you can’t see anything.. much like our main character Malorie.
Malorie is a young woman, who finds herself unexpectedly pregnant, and while discovering this.. the entire world is falling into chaos. Something un-named has exploded all over the world, and mass-suicides are taking place. It’s rumored that people are “seeing something” and immediately committing violet acts or suicide. It’s just full blown CHAOS. Malorie ends up seeing an AD for a safe-house nearby, and she makes it there wearing a blind-fold. The people in the house, make up the characters of this story. All of them have their own personal story, and it’s so fascinating. The tense dynamic between the group was really interesting to read about. Everyone struggling for control, and dominance felt very real. It makes you think.. how would YOU react? ALSO WHY WHY WHY DID NETFLIX REMOVE THE “IT’S RAINING BIRDS SCENE”. Hands down the most horrifying part of the book. I SCREAMED.
I don’t want to say much more, in case you are one of the last remaining people in the world who haven’t seen the Netflix movie haha. I think something like 45 MILLION people have watched it already! Also the MEMES generated by this film, really made my Christmas that much sweeter.
“How far can a person hear? Malorie needs the children to hear into the trees, into the wind, into the dirt banks that lead to an entire world of living creatures. The river is an amphitheater, Malorie muses, paddling. But it’s also a grave. The children must listen. Malorie cannot stave off the visions of hands emerging from the darkness, clutching the heads of the children, deliberately untying that which protects them. Breathing hard and sweating, Malorie prays a person can hear all the way to safety.”
(Good-Reads Plot Summary)
(Something is out there, something terrifying that must not be seen. One glimpse of it, and a person is driven to deadly violence. No one knows what it is or where it came from.
Five years after it began, a handful of scattered survivors remains, including Malorie and her two young children. Living in an abandoned house near the river, she has dreamed of fleeing to a place where they might be safe. Now that the boy and girl are four, it’s time to go, but the journey ahead will be terrifying: twenty miles downriver in a rowboat–blindfolded–with nothing to rely on but her wits and the children’s trained ears. One wrong choice and they will die. Something is following them all the while, but is it man, animal, or monster?
Interweaving past and present, Bird Box is a snapshot of a world unraveled that will have you racing to the final page.)
2.) “One Day in December”
By, Josie Silver
The ULTIMATE Christmas Feel-Good Romantic Story. Also a Reese Witherspoon Book Club Pick! (Soon to be a Movie)
“We sit there for a while longer, huddled together, watching as the first flakes of snow drift down from the midnight sky. There are no rings to give back, no possessions to tussle over, no kids to hand over in blustery car parks. Just two people, about to part ways.”
This book was really cute. It was almost like a Netflix Christmas Movie. Cheesy, Over-The-Top Romantic, and SO cute and heart-warming. I loved it. It was the perfect little story to read over Christmas Break.. and I devoured it in two days.
The story is basically this….. a girl is on her way home from work, sitting on the bus dreading the commute home. THEN she looks out the window, and makes eye-contact with the most gorgeous boy ever.. they have this intense eye-fucking moment, and he races for the bus… BUT IT TAKES OFF TOO FAST!!!! She is devastated over this lost moment, and creepily searches for him for a YEAR all over London.
Fade to…. a year later her Best Friend and Roommate wants to introduce our main character to her new Boyfriend…. and when she meets him…. IT’S BUS BOY.
After this it’s wild. This story spans a 10 year period, and just trust me. It’s the Forbidden Romance of your dreams. Also very Christmas-y and cute!
“Sarah is my best friend in the entire world, and however much and for however long it kills me, I’ll never silently, secretly hold up signs to tell Jack O’Mara, without hope or agenda, that to me he is perfect, and that my wasted heart will always love him.
(Good-Reads Plot Summary)
A Reese Witherspoon x Hello Sunshine Book Club Pick
“Get ready to be swept up in a whirlwind romance. It absolutely charmed me.” —Reese Witherspoon
“Josie Silver writes with a warmth so palpable her characters sneak their way into your heart and stay for a long time.”—Jill Santopolo, New York Times-bestselling author of The Light We Lost Two people. Ten chances. One unforgettable love story.
Laurie is pretty sure love at first sight doesn’t exist anywhere but the movies. But then, through a misted-up bus window one snowy December day, she sees a man who she knows instantly is the one. Their eyes meet, there’s a moment of pure magic…and then her bus drives away.
Certain they’re fated to find each other again, Laurie spends a year scanning every bus stop and cafe in London for him. But she doesn’t find him, not when it matters anyway. Instead they “reunite” at a Christmas party, when her best friend Sarah giddily introduces her new boyfriend to Laurie. It’s Jack, the man from the bus. It would be.
What follows for Laurie, Sarah and Jack is ten years of friendship, heartbreak, missed opportunities, roads not taken, and destinies reconsidered. One Day in December is a joyous, heartwarming and immensely moving love story to escape into and a reminder that fate takes inexplicable turns along the route to happiness.
3.) “The Other Woman”
By, Sandie Jones
A Martial Thriller About The Mother In Law From HELL
“My mum was here. Everything would be okay.”
This was such a great thriller. I read so many different Thrillers, and this one still managed to shock me with the twist. This book gave me so much anxiety, and made me feel SO fortunate to have the most loving and amazing Mother-In-Law in the world. Love you Roni! Thank you for not being ANYTHING like the awful Woman in this book haha!
Thrillers are so hard to semi-review, without spoiling the second half of them. Thanks to “Gone Girl”, most Thrillers these days seem to reveal their “Big Reveal” approximately 1/2 way through the book. The Part 2 Reveal is quite hot right now.
To sum it up.. this is the story of Girl Meets Boy… Girl Gets Engaged To Boy… Girl Meets Boy’s Mom… Boy’s Mom IS NOT A FAN OF HER…… Shit starts to unravel real quick.
(Good-Reads Plot Summary)
(A deliciously disturbing, compulsively readable debut domestic suspense–prepare to meet The Other Woman: there’s nothing she won’t do to keep you away from her son …
Emily thinks Adam’s perfect; the man she thought she’d never meet. But lurking in the shadows is a rival; a woman who shares a deep bond with the man she loves.
Emily chose Adam, but she didn’t choose his mother Pammie. There’s nothing a mother wouldn’t do for her son, and now Emily is about to find out just how far Pammie will go to get what she wants: Emily gone forever.
The Other Woman is an addictive, fast-paced psychological thriller about the destructive relationship between Emily, her boyfriend Adam, and his manipulative mother Pammie.“There’s something about your mother’s voice that nobody else can replicate. That takes you back to school, when you were little and waiting in the nurse’s office for her to come and pick you up.” )
4.) “Salt To The Sea”
By, Ruta Sepetys
CRIED MY EYES OUT. IN PUBLIC. ON A FLIGHT. STILL TRAUMATIZED
“War is catastrophe. It breaks families in irretrievable pieces. But those who are gone are not necessarily lost.”
If you guys read my “Our Honeymoon” Blog Post, you probably heard what an IDIOT I was…. and how I forgot to pack ANY BOOKS for a two weeks trip away! Thank GOD the local grocery store in Cabo had ONE English book, and it was “Salt to the Sea” by Ruta Sepetys (which oddly enough was already on my radar).
I don’t ever read Historical Fiction, and I’m so glad I was “forced” to pick this one up.. because it was hands down one of the best books I’ve ever read.
A harrowing War-Time story, told though the eyes of four different Young Adults. They have all suffered horribly, through so many upsetting events, evacuations, raids, and things too awful to even mention. This book was hard to read, because from the cover and back jacket alone… you are already mentally preparing yourself for the tragic ending. You know how it ends… how brutally, how senselessly.. and just how tragically. I felt like I was holding my breath the entire time. Wow. Wow. A truly beautiful book, in the most awful of situations.
“What determines how we remember history and which elements are preserved and penetrate the collective consciousness? If historical novels stir your interest, pursue the facts, history, memories, and personal testimonies available. These are the shoulders that historical fiction sits upon. When the survivors are gone we must not let the truth disappear with them. Please, give them a voice.”
(Good-Reads Plot Summary)
(World War II is drawing to a close in East Prussia and thousands of refugees are on a desperate trek toward freedom, many with something to hide. Among them are Joana, Emilia, and Florian, whose paths converge en route to the ship that promises salvation, the Wilhelm Gustloff. Forced by circumstance to unite, the three find their strength, courage, and trust in each other tested with each step closer to safety.
Just when it seems freedom is within their grasp, tragedy strikes. Not country, nor culture, nor status matter as all ten thousand people—adults and children alike—aboard must fight for the same thing: survival. )
5.) “The Exes Revenge”
By, Jo Jakeman
A somewhat ridiculous thriller, but I overall enjoyed it
This book was insane. Honestly it was a bit ridiculous, but I found it at the hotel in Mexico.. and like I previously told you I had no book options.. and was DESPERATE. It was pretty good though, with only minimal eye-rolling.
Don’t get me wrong I love a good Thriller, and the plot of this was very addicting. I don’t know how to say this without sounding like a SERIAL KILLER.. but this book just wasn’t “disturbing” enough for me. It was too tame, and I felt like it lacked that “edge”. I’m probably a functioning sociopath, and a normal person would find this book 100% terrifying. Who knows?
(Good-Reads Plot Summary)
(Originally titled Sticks and Stones
A wickedly dark debut thriller about three women who’ve all been involved with the same man and realize the one thing they have in common is that they all want revenge against him…
Divorces are often messy, and Imogen’s is no exception. Phillip Rochester is controlling, abusive, and determined to make things as difficult as possible. When he shows up without warning demanding that Imogen move out of their house by the end of the month or he’ll sue for sole custody of their young son, Imogen is ready to snap.
In a moment of madness, Imogen does something unthinkable–something that puts her in control for the first time in years. She’s desperate to protect her son and to claim authority over her own life.
But she wasn’t expecting both Phillip’s ex-wife and new girlfriend to get tangled up in her plans. These three very different women–and unlikely allies–reluctantly team up to take revenge against a man who has wronged them all.)
Anddd.. That’s It!
I will see you all very soon with my Holiday Wrap Up,
Here are a few more random photos from Nov/Dec. From our Rehearsal Dinner, to picking up our Marriage License, to picking up our Wedding Rings, to Christmas Shopping, etc. Also a few from Ryan’s INSANE Bachelor Party & some Holiday Baking! Also I hinted at a little peek into my new Office.. with my Gallery Wall of all my Girl Crush Icons.. Wednesday Addams, Lydia Deetz, Kira from the Dark Crystal & of course the Mother of Dragons ❤
(All Images @Carly Ingram Photography 2019)
(All Images of Movies & T.V Shows @Google Images)
(Blue Fuzzy Jacket @Urban Outfitters 2019)
(Black and White Print Dress Jacket @H&M 2019)