December Favorites

I decided against titling this post “faves” because it feels too teenagerish. I can handle teenagerishness for a while, but after so long I start to feel like people are judging me for acting teenagerish. I am a teenager, but I'm also supposed to be an adult. Odd, isn't it, that those two eras should coincide?
Merlin. In very early December, when I was just a week and a half out from my Christmas break, I happened on a link to this show on I've been wanting to watch this for a year or two at least, and was so happy to find all sixty-five episodes on Hulu for free! Admittedly the show can get slightly stupid, but I still love it. You can click here to find my full review of the first season.
The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies. I'm stoked I got to see the last goodbye to Middle-Earth in theaters. I missed The Desolation of Smaug for multiple reasons (I instead rented it this summer) but just yesterday watched this 2 1/2-hour spectacle in my local -- ish -- theater. I loved it. One typically wonders at how Peter Jackson could have stretched one battle into a hundred and fifty minutes -- and while there were some long spots, overall it was film done very well. I admit to being pretty sad that Smaug only got to actually speak in one scene--Benedict Cumberbatch was stunning as the dragon, equally as stunning as his portrayal of Sherlock Holmes in the BBC series. And Martin Freeman -- gah. He's so good as well. I was very sad at the end and cried a lot, but it was a good last installment to the adventures of Middle-earth.
Noel by Josh Groban. This is what Josh Groban will do to you: I have always hated the Christmas carol “The Little Drummer Boy” but now it's one of my favorite songs . . . except when someone else sings it. ;-)
Great God Who Saves by Laura Story. I like Laura because she writes almost exclusively worship music. Over time I've grown to greatly dislike bands like Sidewalk Prophets who write cheesy feel-good songs. Laura doesn't write that kind of music, and I appreciate that. :-)
Simone: Free shipping offer on site. From site: Conair - Infiniti Curling Wand Styler in 1/2 in. to 1 in. #ultabeauty
Conair YouCurl 1/2-1” curling wand. This is, like, the greatest invention to the beauty world ever. I haven't yet curled my entire head with it and am still learning how to best use it, but it is just -- ah-mazing. Traditional curling irons are nothing compared to this, people. I got it for Christmas and am soooo happy with it.
My favorite fragrance from #bodycology
“Toasted Sugar” body mist by Bodycology. Smells so yummy!
Winter Candy Apple Fine Fragrance Mist - Signature Collection - Bath & Body Works
“Winter Candy Apple” body mist by Bath & Body Works. Yum yum yum. Yum yum yum. Yum yum yum yum yum.
The Revised Life of Ellie Sweet by Stephanie Morrill
The Revised Life of Ellie Sweet by Stephanie Morrill. I read the sequel in the summer and loooved it, but I like this one almost if not just as well. It's a very simple story, but so cute :-)
Sherlock Holmes collection (Sir Arthur Conan Doyle): so popular right now from the movies, but the books are good too
Note: This is not my edition. My edition is even cooler :)
The Complete Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. It's cool to be able to read the original high-functioning psychopath :-) Haha, Arthur Conan Doyle really doesn't portray him in that light -- not yet anyway. Just as a highly intelligent man who derives his amusement from the chief policemen in Scotland Yard for their blunderings while he has the crime all figured out. And actually, the original Sherlock laughs so much more than I'm accustomed to seeing him. Reading the book is all the more fun for imagining Sherlock as Benedict Cumberbatch and Watson as Martin Freeman!
Chair Workout - YES Hard! I did each move for one minute, redoing the leg lifts because I didn't do them right the first time. My heart rate is up to 130 right now. A very challenging workout, especially the last move, which works arms and especially your chest! I've never felt my chest work so hard as I did in that last move.
Chair Workout. Short but intense, and the last move in the circuit was soooo hard for my chest.
CorePower Yoga Full Body Workout (Popsugar Fitness). This wasn't that hard compared to some that I've tried (aka anything by Jillian Michaels) but I like the relaxing aspect of yoga, plus that it focuses on flexibility and balance as well as strength.
20 Minute Home Upper Body Routine (Fitness Blender). My arms were shaking after I finished this routine and if I recall correctly I was sore the next day.
30 Day Shred Level 1 (Jillian Michaels). It'd been a few months since I'd done this workout and I'm happy to say that I've gotten quite a lot stronger since then! I used heavier weights and only wimped out a couple of times. :-)
Summer Arms // Legs // Abs Workout - YES I did the entirety today, and my legs, arms, abs, and heart all got pretty tired. This is much harder than some Pinterest workouts I've tried so I encourage you to try it. It's about a 30-minute workout, in which I burned around 218 calories.
Summer Arms // Legs // Abs Workout. I just did this this morning, combining all the strength training into one day.
Any & Everything Else
ShapeSense Heart Rate Based Calorie Burn Calculator. I am loving finding out how many calories I actually burn during my walk/workout. :-)
Certified Reconditioned Vitamix 5200. Remember when I said in my December Goals post, “Hopefully [ordering the Vitamix] wasn't the worst mistake of my life or anything”? It's turned out to be one of the best purchases I've ever made and was definitely worth the $300. I've noticed an increase in my energy and happiness since I started liquifying vegetables + fruit + seeds every morning and I am so thankful that I have it.

8lb Wieder weights. I received these for my birthday in September when I don't think I was strong enough for them. I've been able to use them so much more recently and am excited about the increase in my strength!

What about you? What were some of your favorite things from this December?


  1. Mmm- toasted sugar body mist! I can almost smell it! I don't have any specific favorites but I've been loving sweaters and fuzzy pjs/blankets as always. I LOVED the version of Silent Night that Kelly Clarkson, Thrisha Yearwood, and Reba McEntire did. It was aweskme. ;)
    I also loved (music wise) Do you hear what I hear by Carrie Underwood and What child is this by Martina McBride- even though they aren't recent.
    Have a wonderful New Years!

    1. I know right? It smells SO good!

      Oh my goodness yes! My sweats have been boons this season :-) There's nothing better than getting into them after a long day of schoolwork and watching a show or something. I LOVE to do that.

      I haven't heard/seen those three recordings -- I'll have to look into them!

      Nice to “meet” you, Grace! I had fun checking out your blog :-)

    2. Thanks Hannah- you are so sweet!

    3. Aww :-) I'm thankful you visited.

  2. I just have to say, they coincide because "teenage years" are a post-WWII invention, not actually a real thing. In every other era of history there was nothing between "child" and "adult"... pretty sure we were better off for it. :P <Hallie Rant of the Day
    In other news, toasted sugar body spray gives me deja vu to being in GCBI.

    1. Hahahaha you're hilarious. “In other news”. . . .

      Yeah, probably. I would be more mature probs without the teenage segment of life. I mean, you know, the INVENTED teenage segment of life?

  3. I really enjoyed the "Ellie Sweet" books, too. And "The Battle of the Five Armies" brought tears to my eyes also. I was expecting what happened, but STILL.

    Hope you have a Happy New Year, Hannah! :-D

    1. Oh I know . . . I think knowing the ending just made it worse, especially considering RICHARD ARMITAGE -- one of my fave actors of all time -- played such a wonderful Thorin, and I was dreading the ending when I watched the first Hobbit two years ago.

      Happy New Year to you too! Thanks for stopping by :-)

  4. I am DYING for a Vitamix! They're so wonderful and I loooove green smoothies!

    Lauren Elizabeth
    Petite in Pearls

    1. Oh, you need to get one! Certified Reconditioned is a great way to go if you want to save money. I got mine for right about $300 including shipping/taxes. It was on Cyber Monday though so there was a sale ;) I HIGHLY recommend them, if only for the green drinks -- they make you feel so much better!


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