Blogmas: Holiday Reads & TV

Hello!

This Christmas, I wanted to go all out on my celebrations, which really means absorbing as many books, films and TV specials as possible that relate to the holiday season. In this post, I am going to tell you about my reasons over this decision, plus give you some ideas if you’re in the mindset to basically do anything (or everything) I’m doing this December, so I really hope everyone enjoys this little thing.

Books:

Since I finished my reading challenge very early, it has allowed me to devote a chunk of my time to finding some wholesome and maybe not-so-wholesome reads about the holiday season. All but three of the books I’m reading this month are available on Kindle Unlimited, so they were free! So I have three full-length novels and the rest were novellas.

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Title: Unwrapping His Package
Author: Fiona Davenport
Genre: Erotica/romance
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

This was amazing start to the holiday season! I always have a rough time with novellas because they can lack organization, but I didn’t have any problems with this one. It was a very steamy read, but exactly what I wanted to read at that moment of time. 


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Title: A Christmas Carol
Author: Charles Dickens
Genre: Classics/contemporary fiction
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

I have always wanted to read this book. I’ve seen two or three film adaptions but have never actually made to read it, and this has always surprised me because it is the ideal Christmas story, but then again, when I was in school, I only read a handful of classics!

Anywho, I found the audiobook on YouTube and I thought I could listen to it while working on my Christmas cards this past weekend. I don’t know who the narrator was, but he definitely brought the characters to life with his deep, but welcoming voice! If you have about three hours to yourself, you should listen to it as well, and if you want, click here to start reading the book.


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Title: On His Naughty List
Author: Kat Baxter
Genre: Erotica/Romance
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Despite the fact that these two books are in the same series, I did not follow the order, because there were some that sounded cheesy, so I ignored them and found this bad boy! This one definitely had a lot of things missing from the storyline but obviously I didn’t care as much since I gave it a higher score…


The other books I have on my TBR (to be read) list are: Secret Santa by Mayra Stratham, (which is another book in the Filthy, Dirty Christmas series.) A Very Bossy Christmas by Alexis Winter, How to Ruin the Holidays by Becky Monsoon, Christmas in the Scottish Highlands by Donna Ashcroft, and finally Finding Love at the Christmas Market by Jo Thomas. Technically I am (as I write this post) reading A Very Bossy Christmas and it is absolutely hilarious, which is exactly what I want right now, so I see myself enjoying this and the one by Becky Monsoon the most, but we’ll see how things turn out in the end.

TV

I am not one to have my television locked on the Hallmark channel this month–honestly, it is one station I have locked out until the second of January when they turn The Golden Girls back on!

Last year, there was a film premiering on Lifetime called, Christmas Ever After and it starred Ali Stroker. Ali is a wheelchair user like moi, but most importantly she won a Tony away for her performance in “Oklahoma” in 2019. Honestly, the overall concept of seeing someone in an overwhelming holiday romance on my television that I was thoroughly exciting! Unfortunately, I never got a chance to finish watching it, that I feel like I need to find it again and give it another chance before Christmas is over.

I already have a small selection of films in my movie folder, and I am still stunned by my reasonings for wanting to watch them. There is Christmas in Tahoe that apparently was inspired by a Train song or album, and the band itself or just the lead vocalist Pat Monahan is in the actual film too! I adore the band’s music, I’ve been a casual fan over the years, but I thought the concept of this movie was interesting, so this was the first. The second was, A Christmas Dance Reunion, and it has Corbin Bleu and Monique Coleman, who played “Chad” and “Taylor” in the original High School Musical films. And finally, I am recording Sister Swap: A Hometown Holiday which has real sister Kimberly Williams-Paisley and Ashley Williams. It honestly looks really fun and hilarious, so it is on my list as well!

Now I am this selection says “TV” but of course, I’m enjoying all of my other favorites like National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, Annabelle’s Wish and Home Alone. Speaking on that film, I am also looking forward to checking out the newest Home Alone on Disney+ too! I really enjoy the sequels of these films, so this is just natural for me! Now that I have everything done, I can do everything that I love doing in this festive season.

What are you looking forward to the most? Do you have a new favorite holiday book or movie yet?

Blogmas | Christmas Movies I Haven’t Seen Yet

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Howdy!

I’m back for Blogmas! Of course, I’m not blogging everyday this month but I give kudos to anyone that is, because that is very difficult. I’ve done this three years in a row, so my ideas have dwindle down like Santa Claus running out of his toys after a long Christmas night! Forgive me for the metaphor, but I hope you enjoy my holiday inspired posts–by the way, tomorrow’s post isn’t part of it. It’s more of a confessional than anything else!

I love movies a lot, but I always feel holiday films can be pretty cheesy. I like the ones with funny plots and with lots of children in there, but I’ve never liked romantic Christmas inspired films, which is the reason why I blocked out all of the Lifetime and Hallmark channels at the end of October. It’s a corny and overdone plot that somehow gets a whole bunch of people excited for the next one and I don’t understand it!

So, the list below is compiled of popular films that everybody else has seen and enjoyed over the years, but I haven’t had a chance to check them out. I hope you all enjoy!

Miracle On 34th Street (1947)

I will be honest, I was introduced to this movie while I was watching Home Alone because the beginning of the film does play after Kevin discovers everyone has left without him. I’ve had numerous attempts to actually watch both versions throughout my life, but I’ve never been able to clear my mind to devout to it. Everybody says it’s good, but I highly doubt I’ll ever get to watch it.

White Christmas (1954)

I feel extremely guilty about this, but I found this on the AMC channel on Black Friday, but forgot to tell my nana that it would be on that afternoon! I felt so bad! It’s one of her favorite films and I actually will not watch it until she has, so hopefully between my aunt, uncle and I, we can find the black and white version on TV for her to watch finally! I think after she’s seen it again, I will eventually get to it, but until then it’ll sit on this list.

Die Hard (1988)

I really don’t understand how this could be a Christmas film but apparently it is! However, if I’m correct, this might be just unique enough for me to enjoy, because I am a lover of action based films, I just want to know how Christmas is tied into it. I’ve been told that I should watch this franchise along with the Jason Bourne series, but I haven’t found any of them on our movie channels in order, so they all kind of belong on this post.

Jack Frost (1998)

I had to ask my mom if we ever watched this before, she thinks we have but agrees with me that we probably didn’t really like it too much. Michael Keaton is a hit or miss when it comes to him dressing up for various roles. I barely got through Beetlejuice in once piece because of him! What’s interesting is that, you’d think being made into a live action snowman it would be kind of cute, but I’ve always had issues with this part of acting. Now the question is, if it played on our movie channels, would I give it another shot? I would try it out again, only because if I can get through anything vampire and witch inspired films, this should be a piece of cake!

Love Actually (2003)

I find it a little odd that I haven’t seen this yet, because I have been trying my best to let myself watch romantic-comedies without any judgement–this is a lot more difficult then it sounds as seen above! I see this everywhere after Halloween, but I always tend to ignore it. Once I checked out who was in the film, I realized that it has a similar plot like New Year’s Eve where you have a large amount of actors, in different situations and love blossoms in each 20 minute scene. I might have to watch it, because I actually love NYE a lot!

Krampus (2015)

This was the movie that actually inspired me to create this post. I don’t really like creepy films despite the fact that I’m clearly a fan of vampires, witches, and werewolves, but the creatures in this are far beyond what I can take in both day and night. However, I do find the origins of “Krampus” very interesting. Even though this is clearly a thriller, it actually have some truth to it; here in the US, we say to kids all throughout the year that if they’re bad, then they’ll only receive a lump of coal. This has the same idea, but kids are basically being scared into behaving right with these half-goat, half demon beasts. Now you know why I haven’t seen this sucker yet!

I’m pretty sure I am missing quite a few others, but I just wanted to keep this list short and sweet, maybe I will figure out some more to do this again! Plus, it’s still pretty early into the month that I technically have plenty of time to watch one or two of the films on here and several others, so there’s like a 50/50 chance on whether I actually get to do a part two for Blogmas 2019!

Is there any Christmas-y movies that you HAVEN’T seen yet? What kind of genre do you prefer to watch for this time of the year?

3 Shows That Were Cancelled Too Early

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I’ve been wanting to write about this since I seen Sara Bloo write about it on her blog either last year or the year before, I can’t remember at the moment. She had a pretty good mix of TV shows that she’s been missing and ever since then I’ve been thinking about what all I miss and which ones to include on here.

I like a lot of different shows, I don’t stay into one slot even though my brain wishes I would because I tend to get confused with the different characters and plots! One thing that all three have in common is that the final episodes were cliffhangers! Fans were left with not exactly knowing what would happened to these beloved characters! So I hope I have put some shows that maybe you enjoyed also and maybe we can bond on our favorite scenes and wonder where the story could have gone if they were allowed one more season!

1.) Forever – Fantasy/Crime starring Ioan Gruffudd, Alana de la Garza, and Judd Hirsch (2014-15)

I personally loved this show! Unfortunately, this was one of the shows that I ended up recording because it would come on so late at night. You’d think this wouldn’t be such an issue but at the time it was. I like having an hour or two to listen to my iPod before going to bed officially.

I found the story line to be very interesting! I have always loved the idea of immortal human beings, so the main character Dr. Henry Morgan being alive after he was shot on board a slave ship in 1814, everytime he is awaken he ends up in the Hudson River butt naked! He has an aging son Abe, which is such a good and creative outpost for this very complicated character, he basically can’t trust other people if he tells them the truth about how he gets out of these dangerous situations.

Of course, we have a couple of love interests. His first wife Nora committed him into an asylum when he told her about him being an immortal. After escaping and a few decades, he marries again to a woman named Abigail, who was his nurse when he treated soldiers in World War II, this is where they find Abe as a baby and they decide to adopt him. Again, after a few decades he meets Detective Jo Martinez who can’t quite get her head around this mysterious man and the things that seem to happen all around him. During the final episode, Henry finally talks to her and we’re pretty sure he finally confesses up to the secret of his life.

2. Mistresses – Drama starring Alyssa Milano, Yunjim Kim, Rochelle Ayles, and Jes Macallan (2013-16)

I will say that, despite the fact that this show was treated like a normal soap opera, I definitely see it like that. I’m still surprised that I watched it every summer and looked forward to the previews starting in March! Sadly, I never saw the news of it being cancelled so by the time March came along, I was wondering about it and thought maybe they were going to premiere later in the year. Well one day I got enough courage and found out that it got cancelled the previous September. SEPTEMBER! How the hell did I miss this because I follow basically the whole cast on Twitter!

My thoughts are because of the graphic nature and actions of the character “Joss” everybody seem to lose interest, however I disagree with the direction. As a sister of domestic abuse victim, how the character presented herself was normal. My sister didn’t go that route, but her anxiety heightened after everything happened. Once that changes, your whole personality can suffer too. They’re just trying to make everything they went through go away.

3. Witches Of East End – Fantasy/Drama starring Julia Ormond, Jenna Dewan-Tatum, Rachel Boston, and Machen Amick (2013-14)

I’m still trying to figure out how I got into this show in the first place! I’m pretty sure Jenna Dewan-Tatum had something to do with it, but I think I was actually curious about it. For one I had never heard of the book series before the show premiered but quickly put it on my TBR list after a few episodes aired! Another thing that weirded me out was the fact that it was on Lifetime or all channels!

Wendy is my favorite character, I’m not being biased when I say that, because if anybody watched it and have been reading this blog for a while, you think you know where I’m going with this, but you don’t! I’d wreck all nine lives if I was a cat! Anyways, I liked Freya and interesting past lives she had with Killian. I also loved the story line with Athena, the mother of both Dash and Killian and daughter of Archibald, a warlock who didn’t necessarily like the Beauchamps in East End.

This one also had another crazy cliffhanger that I have always been wondering about, because Ingrid had the weird “relationship” with the Mandragora and had a sauce-y fling with Freya’s ex-fiancee Dash and at the end of the finale we found out she’s pregnant but no chance in hell or ever finding out who is the father!

Did you watch any of these shows? Can you name a show that was short-lived and would come back?

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Five

I’ve always been into Lifetime, mostly because when I was growing up my mom and nana would watch their favorite shows on Lifetime, like The Golden Girls and The Nanny. They use to play them in the mornings and afternoons. Then the rest of the time they would play movies. When I was little I wasn’t big on watching the movies they’d play. Now that I’m older, sometimes if I can’t find anything else to watch and if the summary of the movie sounds good I’ll watch it.

Recently, I watched this movie called “Five.” It’s about five different women going through life living with breast cancer. Five mini stories, five different women directors. Jennifer Aniston, Demi Moore, Alicia Keys, Penelope Spheeris, and Patty Jenkins were the five directors of each story. Jennifer Aniston directed the story of “Mia.” She had breast cancer for two years and expected to die. Her story started from now and went backwards, her story was probably the most hilarious! Patricia Clarkson plays Mia.

Demi Moore directed the story of “Charlotte” and was the opening story of the movie. This story starts of a mother dying of breast cancer and her young daughter Pearl being by her side. She drew a picture of her mother on the moon with two astronuats and told her mother “nobody gets sick on the moon” and Charlotte told her daughter that was where she was going. Ginnifer Goodwin potrays Charlotte. I actually missed the beginning of this story. I only got to watch the end of it.

Alicia Keys directed the story of “Lili” and she is a sophisicated, young black woman who doesn’t really want her mother to know she has breast cancer. When she goes to have lunch with her mother and older sister, her mother gets upset that Lili doesn’t want to go to her cousin’s party. Her mother makes a big scene and says something about having cancer because it would be used as an excuse. Her sister stops her and then indeeds says, Lili does have cancer, breast cancer. This was a very good story. I shouldn’t give everything away. Rosario Dawson plays Lili. Jenifer Lewis plays her mother, Maggie. Tracee Ellis Ross plays her sister, Alyssa.

Penelope Spheeris directed the story of “Cheyanne.” Cheyanne is a young, exotic dancer. Her husband, Tommy is a gambler. Tommy goes to watch his wife dance and when they come home. While he goes to undo her bra, he feels something on her right breast and then she felt it. They go to the doctor about it and she tells Cheyanne she has to have surgery on not just one breast but both of them. She worries about her how her husband would feel about her losing both of her breasts. She gets very worried and insecurtied about her body. It was a very good story. Lyndsy Fonseca plays Cheyanne and Taylor Kinney plays her husband, Tommy.

The last story was directed by Patty Jenkins. This story was about the daughter of the opening story of the movie. “Pearl” is about a young doctor that treats women who have breast cancer and sees what they go through with the cancer. Pearl is a mother and goes into looking for things her mother had. At the end of the movie Pearl and the other stories of women come together for their 5 years of survival and kiss a tile on the wall. Pearl was the doctor of Mia, Lili, and Cheyanne. Jeanne Tripplehorn potrays the story of Pearl.