I finished my 2017 Reading Challenge!

One of my goals for 2017 was to read more. I set a goal of 15 books because it seemed like a great and challenging (and realistic) goal. I’m so proud of myself for actually sticking to it and finishing! Below are the last 7 books I read in May, June and July. Check out my Goodreads profile to see what I’m currently reading!

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Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore

My Score: 2/5 stars
I did not like this book ūüė¶ The characters sucked (except for Mr. Penumbra — I liked him!) and the main guy was exceptionally annoying. I hated how often he talked about this chick that he liked, it was so weird. I will say that I really like how the author writes though! His style seems super laid back and funny. He definitely had me giggling during some parts. Overall I would definitely read another book by this author, I just think this story in particular was extra boring.

Dark Matter

My Score: 5/5 stars
I read this in like 2 and 1/2 days which is super unusual for me.¬†I don’t even like sci-fi but I couldn’t put this down! It is a dark thriller that’ll sort of mess with your head and for weeks after I had finished it I was still doing a play-by-play of what happened in the book, what could’ve happened in the book and how it could relate to the real world and our existence and yada yada, it’s great from start to finish! One hundred thousand percent it is a must-read!

City of Dark Magic

My Score: 5/5 stars
I guess this is considered a fantasy novel but when I think of “fantasy” I think about witches, wizards and magical creatures (like LOTR, Harry Potter, Narnia, etc.) but to me this book felt more like historical fiction, even though it is set in modern day Prague. Let me explain; there is magic in this book but it’s described more so as the science of alchemy and chemicals and stuff. And to be honest the magic is more in the story itself and how much of it involves music, which after all¬†is¬†the real magic in our world. Even though I loved the story I didn’t actually have a favorite character. The main character was a little annoying at times but the mysterious elements of the books definitely saved it for me and kept me turning the page. I’d totally re-read this again!

Sisterhood of the Squared Circle

My Score: 5/5 stars
This is fun and informative read about women’s wrestling. There is a lot of information about the beginnings of women’s wrestling and a lot of profiles and history of some of the earliest known women wrestlers in the USA and around the world. The book also talks about most of the current WWE roster as well as other women from the indies. The photos inside are black and white but there are a nice few pages printed on thicker cardstock that are in full color, including a full page photo of the Queen herself: Charlotte Flair.

YES by Daniel Bryan

My Score: 4/5 stars
I love a good story and this book is full of them! It was fun reading all of Daniel Bryan’s stories and learning about his childhood, how he met Brie Bella and basically his life from indies superstar to WWE underdog turned top star. I was actually not a Daniel Bryan fan when he was “on top” and popular. By the time I started watching WWE regularly he was already injured and only came back to TV to announce his retirement. Wilson, however, is the big Daniel Bryan fan and this is actually his book that he let me borrow. It was a great read, except for one thing: all the parts written by Craig Tello at the beginning of each chapter. If you read this book, skip Craig’s parts. They suck. A lot. They honestly made me so mad because of how stupid and unnecessary they were for this book!!

At the Water’s Edge

My Score: 5/5 stars
What a lovely book. Sara Gruen is magical and she has a writing style that I am just madly in love with. Every time I read this book I could so easily picture everything in my head. It’s basically about this woman who goes on a journey with her husband and her husband’s best friend to look for the Lochness Monster. Her husband wants to prove to his father (and everyone else) that he’s not, well, a loser or a wimp. What made me love this book (besides the great writing) was the main character! She was very relatable and likable and grew a lot in this book. I love when we get to see character development.

Water for Elephants

My Score: 5/5 stars
I read At the Water’s Edge first, then the Daniel Bryan book and then I decided to re-read this one. Water for Elephants is my all time favorite book. I read it a few years ago after I had watched the movie (which is also great, btw.) I love the circus theme, the story (love, suspense, murder, comedy) the characters, the writing, the everything. The main character in this book is absolutely amazing. It’s written in first-person and flips back and forth with a present-day old man to his memories as a young man working at the circus. It works so well. 5/5 forever.

Happy Book Lovers Day ūüďöūüíĖ

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My first year watching the Crossfit Games!

Early last week Wilson sent me a link to watch a documentary following four of the top women competing in this year’s Crossfit Games. I like learning more about the things that Wilson is interested in because it gives us more things to talk about so of course I watched it. I hit play knowing nothing about Crossfit and I was majorly impressed with the women I was seeing. Sara Sigmundsdottir (pictured below) is the one that definitely stood out to me the most with her hard work ethic, great body and cute voice! ūüėõ

Sara Sigmundsdottir, finished 4th in the 2017 Crossfit Games

The Games last four days (Thursday through Sunday) and I made sure to watch as much of the live stream as I could, but mostly focused on just the women’s events. Sara was doing great and even ended the day as top leader (#1 position) on Friday night! Sadly I felt like she was falling behind on Sunday during the first two events. However she definitely pulled it together on the final event, coming in first!

Unfortunately that win was not enough to put her in first place overall but I am very happy for the winner: Tia-Clair Toomey. That girl worked her ass off during the games, finishing at either 1st or 2nd place in all the events the entire weekend. Plus, she was also in the documentary that I mentioned above and she stated that she was ready to get out of that second-place spot (Toomey came in 2nd overall at the 2015 and 2016 Crossfit Games) and she finally succeeded! She had serious determination and put in the hard work and it definitely paid off earning her the title of Fittest Woman on Earth!

Tia-Clair Toomey, winner of the 2017 Crossfit Games

Other competitors that I’ll be keeping my eyes on for the next year include Lauren Fisher, Brooke Wells, Kara Webb and Tennil Reed-Beuerlein. Katrin Davidsdottir is another, mostly because she is Wilson’s favorite and she seems like a very kind person who is a badass at lifting weights. It will be exciting to see all these women train and compete in the open and regional competitions and see who makes it to the 2018 Crossfit Games… I’m so excited!

Thoughts on: GLOW

netflix-glowI really wanted to love this show and I’m sad that I didn’t! It wasn’t awful, but it was just okay. It is definitely not one of those “OMG you HAVE to watch this!”¬†type of show. In fact, you won’t be missing much if you don’t watch it. Although I guess if you’re a total noob to wrestling you might learn the difference between a heel and a face, and what a “gimmick” is… Geez, okay I guess it’s a good show if you’re a wrestling newbie!

I, however, am not a wrestling newbie and I love women’s wrestling. Ironically I think that’s part of the reason why I didn’t totally enjoy this show. The wrestling was lame (I know, I know, they’re not actual wrestlers but I think I was just expecting to see some badass wrestling… none of which happened!) The main character was also annoying af. Sooo so annoying, especially with that accent she started using as her gimmick. Seriously, I didn’t like any of the girls. Or the guys. Or anyone. Which says a lot! If I don’t like, admire or relate to any character in the entire show… that’s a problem. For me anyways.

(Quick plug in for shows that DO have great characters that you should totally watch: Reign, Jane the Virgin, Once Upon A Time, Witches of East End, Drop Dead Diva…)

Netflix original shows love nudity, sex scenes and curse words and this show is no exception. The first episode basically starts off with a nude sex scene, and I was just like “Um, okay.” There’s a lot of cursing, which is fine, I guess, but at one point it just gets a little boring… like, can’t you say anything else besides fuck, damn and bitch!?

Alright so overall, this show was okay. It’s only 10 episodes so it’s not very long. With the way this season ended it looks like there will be a season 2, which I will be watching because I think it should be more interesting. (I hope.)

Wonder Woman Movie Date

I can’t believe I still haven’t blogged about this movie! It’s sad how long it took me to watch it at the movie theater, but better late than never, right?

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I’ve known about Gal Gadot since I saw her playing Gisele in the Fast and the Furious movie series. She was this skinny bad ass who I immediately liked because I’m skinny too and I want to be a bad ass, lol. ūüėõ I was excited to see how she would perform as Wonder Woman and I honestly think she did a fabulous job!

It’s been a few weeks since I saw it so I don’t remember every single scene specifically but I just remember truly enjoying it from start to finish. The movie was funny (gotta love the boat scene in the beginning!) entertaining, amazing, wonderful, action-packed and gave me such great positive vibes. I felt inspired seeing Diana’s strength, care and love. Her outfit was on point too, it looked like real armor not something just something frilly and cute. (Read this twitter thread!)

I definitely need to get some Wonder Woman merch soon! A few tees, maybe a necklace and somehow I have to get my hands on a replica of her tiara. ūüėÖ Her tiara reminds me so much of Sailor Moon and I even saw this cute artwork of them together! Love!!

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Art by @b_1st

I’ve only seen the movie once but would love to re-watch it so I’ll definitely be buying it on DVD or downloading it so I can watch it many more times.

Money in the Bank 2017!

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Where do I even start? I was excited when I found out that the women’s ladder match would be kicking off the show only to be quickly disappointed by the outcome of the match. But before I even get into that, let me just say that the promo video that played before the match began was pure gold. It made me super emotional and definitely pumped me up for this history making match. (Sigh… so sad that it turned out to be a disappointment…)

My queen, Charlotte, came out looking like a million bucks in her fabulous peacock robe and a purple version of her gear that she wore at Wrestlemania 33. She did a beautiful moonsault off the top rope which was, sadly, one of the very few cool spots of the match. Another great spot that I enjoyed is pictured below of Carmella and Becky.

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There was a spot where Carmella and Charlotte were both climbing the ladder and then Tamina came and tipped the ladder over which made Carmella and Charlotte fall off. I believe it was right after this, or soon after, that Carmella tried to pick up the ladder but it was really heavy… It made me giggle because Carmella is tiny and if I were in her spot I would have a hard time picking up that ladder too!

I can’t remember exactly how it played out but things soon after went downhill. Becky was climbing the ladder when James Ellsworth hit Becky with the ladder causing her to fall out of the ring. He then proceeded to climb the damn ladder and actually had the nerve to remove the briefcase and then drop it down to Carmella who successfully caught it and held onto it very tightly.

I was so pissed. First off, I did want Carmella to win. I love her character and think she deserves a push and a Money in the Bank contract is perfect in her hands. However, I wanted Carmella to be the one to climb the ladder. I wanted Carmella to be the one who unhooks the case and proudly holds it up. I was so disappointed that in the first ever WOMEN’S¬†Money in the Bank ladder match a MAN is the one who climbed the ladder and got the briefcase. Such a shame and such an embarrassment. Carmella deserves so much better and I hope they fire Ellsworth for interfering and let Carmella do her own thing! She does not need Ellsworth. She is a star and even though Ellsworth totally ruined this match I look forward to seeing what Carmella does with the contract.


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I am actually a big Lana fan and was excited to see her wrestle. I’m honestly not a big fan of Naomi as champ and I was truly hoping Lana would win! First off, she looked fantastic in her outfit and to think that this gimmick was supposed to go to Emma is totally crazy in my opinion. Emma could not pull this off but Lana definitely can. Lana’s wrestling was okay and I’m excited to watching her improve and get better and better.

Carmella actually came out during the match and teased cashing in her Money in the Bank contract and I was sooooo happy when she shrugged and said “nevermind.” I did not want her to cash it in that same night! I want Carmella to hold the contract for awhile and use that to cause some havoc in the women’s division.


Maria Kanellis, who I am not familiar with, also came out with her husband later in the show. They are giving me Miz and Maryse vibes so we’ll see how their story plays out.


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Overall I give 2017’s Money in the Bank a thumbs down. No man should have been involved in the women’s ladder match!! However I am intrigued now to see what happens on Tuesday on Smackdown Live…

Thoughts on: YouTube Video Game Walkthroughs/Gameplays

Oh the world of Final Fantasy! I played my first game when I was in the third grade and three games in particular have held such a special place in my heart. Final Fantasy IX, Final Fantasy X and Final Fantasy X-2 are the three Final Fantasy games that I have played over and over and over (and over and over) again for the past 15 or so years and I never get tired of them. I love the characters in these two worlds, I love the music in all three games, I love the characters SO FREAKING MUCH.

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When I was in elementary school and middle school I would play these games for hours each and every day, especially when I was on a break from school. Now that I am an “adult” (ew) I do not have the time to sit and play video games like I used to¬†but¬†hello YouTube!¬†YouTube¬†has a ton of video game¬†walkthrough videos and¬†I was first introduced to them when I found Dave The Usher’s video game walkthrough of Final Fantasy IX. I was instantly hooked.

The¬†fantastic thing about watching someone else play a video game is that you can do a lot of other things while still enjoying the storyline, characters and music of the game. For the past few weeks I have been watching his video game walkthrough of Final Fantasy X-2 while cooking and eating dinner, exercising, folding laundry and even on my lunch breaks at work! It’s so great to do everything I “need” to do while still¬†“getting through” a video game. I actually just finished the walkthrough today and yes, I cried, like I always do at the end of Final Fantasy X-2 (happy tears of course!) Last month I blogged about the dresspheres in Final Fantasy X-2, if you want to check that out!

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Another game series that I used to play a lot when I was younger are the Nancy Drew PC games! My sister and I used to love playing these together (because some of them got very spooky!) Sadly¬†I haven’t played a Nancy Drew game in YEARS (so sad) but whenever I get a craving to play I always hop onto YouTube! I used to watch ArgleFumph’s¬†gameplays but I recently I discovered YourGibs, who has a little less annoying voice, lol. My all time favorite in the series is Nancy Drew: Danger on Deception Island! These gameplays are much shorter than the Final Fantasy ones, but they are still super entertaining and fun.

Sticking with PC games, let’s talk about The Sims! I’m sure there are a ton of Sims players on YouTube but the only YouTuber¬†I used to watch was LifeSimmer. I haven’t watched any Sims gameplays lately but I do remember watching these in the past and really enjoying them because the YouTuber just had such a sweet sounding voice.

So anyways, now that I am done with Final Fantasy X-2 I am thinking about starting up Final Fantasy IX¬†(YES AGAIN!) but I also want to finish Final Fantasy XV, which I have never actually played myself 1) because the PS4 that Wilson and I share is currently at his place, and 2) I’m not spending $50 on a video game! Maybe young-Jessica would have (correction: young-Jessica would have asked her¬†parents) but hell nah, 50 bucks is a lot!¬†Especially knowing damn well that I wouldn’t play it very frequently. What¬†will end up happening is that I will probably just hop from IX and XV, which sounds good to me!

My life without Netflix or Hulu

I was such¬†a die-hard can’t-live-without-it Netflix fan for so many years. It was the only TV streaming service I needed. I had heard of something called “Hulu” and one day I randomly tried out their free one week trial but¬†I didn’t see anything that made me want to stay and subscribe.¬†That is until October 2014 when I had finished season 3 of Revenge on Netflix and I was dying to know what happens next! When the last episode ended I quickly went online to search for a premiere date of season 4 and found out that the new episodes were already airing on TV, so then I did another search trying to find the¬†episodes online and bam! Hulu pops up! Since I had already used my¬†free one week trial I had to pay and to this day¬†I can still¬†remember running out of my chair to grab my purse¬†to get my credit card. Hulu take my money! I needed to¬†subscribe asap.

My breakfast every morning, with my iPad mini (what I use to stream video) and the book I was reading in February

Ever since that day I became a loyal Hulu member. I continued to watch the new episodes of Revenge on Hulu as well as some of my other favorites like Once Upon A Time, The Mindy Project, Jane the Virgin and Total Divas. I soon realized I was spending more time with Hulu than I was with Netflix so I decided to say goodbye to my Netflix subscription. I never missed it because I had Hulu and Hulu has a great selection of TV shows including some awesome cartoons like Hey Arnold! and Digimon. They even started streaming the new Sailor Moon episodes so it was definitely the place to be.

But beginning early this year I found¬†myself¬†spending more time reading or watching wrestling than logging into my Hulu account to watch the other shows. It felt like I was just wasting away $7¬†every month. I know, it’s seven bucks — no big deal, but when you think about how a paperback costs $8-12 then I got to thinking: omg that could (almost) be a new book! So I eventually decided to let Hulu go too. As much fun as it is to watch a cool story unfold on TV it is just as much fun to¬†read it and see it in my mind.

I can’t lie, sometimes I really do miss Netflix and Hulu, especially when everyone on Twitter is talking about a TV show that they can’t stop watching. But I just tell myself what I know to be true: if I get Netflix or Hulu again I am going to spend my free time watching more TV (on top of the ~5 hours per week I already spend¬†on wrestling) and I am going to get super behind on my reading list… and I definitely don’t want that to happen! This is the first year that I am reading a lot and really enjoying it. TV shows are fun, but man, books… books are amazing!

And so for now¬†I enjoy my books and my wrestling. I’ll definitely be subscribing to Netflix again whenever season 4 of Reign gets added because that. show. is. AMAZING! Easily one of my top 3 favorite TV shows of all time! A¬†few years ago I don’t think I could have imagined myself without Netflix or Hulu… and now look at me, surviving without either one, lol.

Update: 5/15/17 Netflix released this trailer so I might renew my subscription for a month to watch it. ūüėÖ