We’re halfway through 2017 and now halfway through the summer. Overall, I feel like 2017 has been a better year for me, personally. Well, so far — we do still have five and half months to go. And this summer… although it’s been a relatively lazy one, it’s been good. I’ve been able to visit with friends and family, take pictures of people I love, challenge myself with a huge project at work, love seeing what our Project 52 Flickr group captures and even find time to unwind at home. A good balance. But there are a few things that I keep coming back to that are my favorites of the summer!
If you haven’t seen the new Wonder Woman movie yet, I don’t know if we can be friends. Mike and I enjoy comic book movies, but when it comes to the Justice League characters… they aren’t my favorite. Batman’s OK. I’ve never really understood Superman (even though he’s my brother’s favorite). The Flash seems like a cool guy. Aquaman… can’t say I know much. And then there’s Wonder Woman. I never liked the TV series from the 1970s and what I had learned about how she came to be… it made me pause. But — AND THIS IS A BIG BUT — what the writers and director Patty Jenkins did for the new 2017 movie changed my opinion of her. Is the storyline of the movie perfect? No. I actually disliked the love interest part of it. But the cinematic choices made and the fact that these Amazonian women are the fiercest beasts to ever protect a hidden island makes it fantastic! There were actual moments during fight scenes that I was on the verge of tears — it struck me on a deeper level than I expected. I will own this movie and watch it all the freaking time.
Sticking with motion film, another favorite of mine this summer is the new TNT drama, Claws. It’s about a group nail artists in Southern Florida who are also kind of sort of involved with a prescription drug clinic ran by mobsters… but it is GREAT! It’s a little dark (re: the parts involving drugs, mob guys and murder), but it’s also very funny. Niecy Nash does such a great job as Desna, a character that drifts between two different paths of life but knows what she wants in the end. Carrie Preston is so fun to watch because her character, Polly, is being revealed in layers like an onion. Quiet Ann (Judy Reyes) is full of surprises and I’ve really enjoyed seeing Harold Perrineau act as Desna’s autistic brother, Dean. The episodes are wonderfully written, I’m engaged throughout (and love the limited commercials), laugh numerous times and the soundtrack is on point. The fact that One Way’s Cutie Pie was featured made me smile from ear to ear. Give it a chance — I think you’ll be delightfully surprised.
I’ve been reading a lot more this year (thanks to my great little book club) and actually set a goal for myself to read 30 books by the end of 2017. I’m on book 21 already, so I think meeting that goal is in the bag, but I a series I read this summer has me feeling like Alice trying to figure out which pill to eat next. I read Blake Crouch’s Dark Matter earlier this year and really enjoyed his writing style, so when his Wayward Pines triology went on sale on Amazon, I bought it for my Kindle. And then I proceeded to breeze right on through all three books. Not gonna lie, it’s a little weird… a mix of sci-fi and what-ifs… but a really good story. When I read that Twin Peaks had actually inspired Crouch to write the books, I had to look into that too — I’ve spent the last few weeks watching the early 1990s series much to Mike Murphy’s dismay. And once I can get my hands on the short-lived Wayward Pines TV show, I’ll watch that too. Like I said, I fell into a rabbit hole with this one.
It’s been hotter than the hinges on Hades door this summer. Even this past week we’ve been topping out in the upper 90s, closing in on triple digits, so finding solace with a peachy iced green tea from Starbuck’s has been a go-to-treat the last several weeks. I don’t really like Starbuck’s coffee (not that I’m drinking it all that much these days), but there’s a couple of things I do like, the peach tea being my favorite. It’s ice-cold, fruity and refreshing… it hits the spot on those once-a-week-treat-yo-self-to-coffee meetings we have at work. The bonus is the tea doesn’t rattle my stomach, which is why I keep going back to it.
I love sandals. I actually did a five faves sandals post a few years back — that’s how much I love them. I actually still wear the ones I blogged about, but have added more to my collection since then. A pair I recently bought though are my new favorites: TOMS Lexie Sandal. And because I signed up for Zappos Rewards, I only paid half price for them. Why do I love them? They’re casual but the woven tops take it up a notch, the neutral “greige” color matches a lot of my wardrobe (and my house!) and the ankle strap makes them even more secure on my foot. Like most flat sandals they don’t have arch supports, but they are on my feet all the time regardless.