BlissAndBubbly

Book Club

April Reading List

Happy April, everybody! I’m pretty sure the saying “April showers bring May flowers” originated in Texas because the storms we’ve been having this year ( and every single Spring… ) are sliiiiightly dramatic LOL. You haven’t seen rain until you’ve seen Texas rain, let me tell ya.

Anywho! I was really struggling with a theme for April’s reading list, so I just decided this month will be a bunch of randoms that have been sitting in my Amazon cart for forever. That way this will motivate me to read them, and hopefully inspire a few of you to read them as well. 🙂

april_reading_list

  1. The War Of Art By: Steven Pressfield: I’ve been wanting to read this for forever! I think this would be a great book for anyone, weather you have a more creative job/passion, or not. It will teach you how to avoid the roadblocks that inevitably come with working on any creative project. Sounds very inspirational.
  2. Big Little Lies By: Liane Moriarty: Ok so I just finished watching the HBO tv adaptation of this book and I honestly haven’t loved a show THAT much in a really, really long time. Like it was SO GOOD. If you haven’t watched it, you are not living your life. I’m dead serious, watch it, all 7 episodes, TONIGHT. You won’t regret it! Since the show was the greatest thing ever, I decided I want to read the book. I usually read the book, then see the movie/watch the show, but why not switch it up every once in awhile, ya know?
  3. Just The Essentials By: Adina Grigore: I recently read another one of her books, Skin Cleanse, and got 1209738 blog post ideas all about DIY natural skincare. This book is all about essential oils and how to use them in your daily life. I got into essential oils about a year ago and am hooked, but still have so much to learn! I can’t wait to read this one.
  4. When You Find Out The World Is Against You By: Kelly Oxford: Kelly Oxford is one of my favorite people ever. She was named “one of the funniest people on twitter” by Rolling Stone, she’s a blogger, she’s a mom of 3, she is an author of multiple books, and she’s just RELATABLE. This is her newest book and I cannot wait to dive in to it. I think I might save it for a juicy read on my vacation coming up at the end of this month. It just seems like a good beach read to me. 🙂
  5. We Are Never Meeting In Real Life By: Samantha Irby: Samantha is the author of the blog Bitches Gotta Eat and she is amazingly real & just plain hilarious. I love bloggers who don’t sugar coat anything, and talk about REAL LIFE. If you want to feel like you’re not alone in any situation ever, this is the book to read.
  6. Hello Glow By: Stephanie Gerber: This is a book of 150 natural, organic DIY beauty/spa day treatments. Need I say more? #girlsnight :).

I hope everyone is having a wonderful start to April. Again, how fast is this year going?! What are some books you’ve been dying to read?

Thanks for reading 🙂

XO, Madison

March Reading List

Well hello there, I am so glad you found your way to Bliss And Bubbly! I usually post my monthly reading lists on the 1st of each month but life got in the way this month, what can I say. On another note…. can you believe it’s MARCH??? What is going on?! 2017 is literally just flying by.

March in Texas is usually when the weather has a really, really, realllllly hard time making up it’s mind. It goes from sunny, perfect, & 75 to the next day being cloudy, rainy & in the 50’s. I am a sunshine at all times kind of girl, so March is usually when I need a little boost of something happy to get me though until the sweet summertime.

The theme for Bliss And Bubbly’s March Reading List is: HAPPINESS.

march_reading_list

  1. Everything, Everything By Nicola Yoon –  This book is being made into a movie that comes out this summer ( I think? ) and is the sweet story of a girl who has a rare disease and is allergic to everything. She’s never been outside, never touched nature, never breathed fresh air. A new family moves in next door & she falls in love from a far with their son. It’s a heartbreakingly romantic novel about doing what makes you happy, no matter the consequences.
  2. Szen Zone By Gary Szenderski –  I was sent this book last month, and you can read my full review here, but I am adding it to this list because it’s a beyond incredible read. I kept wanting to describe it as “life changing” because I didn’t know how else to articulate how impactful it was to me. If you have any interest in making really, really positive changes in your life, you need to order this book ASAP.
  3. The Happiness Project By Gretchen Rubin –  This a book of stories from personal experiences of the author all about tiny changes you can make today, and everyday, to live a happier life and just have more fun. Sounds like the perfect rainy day read to me!
  4. A House For Happy Mothers By Amuyla Malladi –  This is the story of two women on opposite sides of the planet who have the lives each of the other one dreams of and how through the creation of children their lives become intertwined. This one sounds like a book that will make you appreciate what you have and really just be thankful. Plus I just love stories ( real or fiction ) about motherhood!
  5. Whatever Makes You Happy By Lisa Grumwald –  This a novel of a woman’s journey to find happiness amongst being a mom, wife, sister, and friend. It will be a very lighthearted read about literally doing whatever makes you happy, even if it isn’t the “right” thing to do at the time.
  6. Happy People Read And Drink Coffee By Agnés Martin – Lugand –  I listed this one last but it’s actually first on my to – read list because it sounds SO GOOD I can’t wait for it to come in the mail! It’s the story of a woman living her perfect life in Paris, until she loses her husband and child in a sudden accident. She moves to a small town to heal on her own, and ends up falling in love all over again with the last person she ever thought she would even be able to fall in love with. It’s the story of redefining what it means to be happy after a tragedy. Ahhh it just sounds so good.

That’s all, until next month! Order these and get to reading! 🙂 I’d love to hear what ya’ll think of them after you read them. Like sitting down and having a cup of coffee with each other discussing the book, but over the internet. Totally normal! 😉

Thanks for reading!

XO, Madison

Book Review – Szen Zone

Happy Monday! Did everybody have a good weekend? I caught up on a lot of sleep and cleaned the whole apartment, so not super exciting but very productive!

A few weeks ago I was contacted about writing a book review on a book called Szen Zone. I was immediately intrigued because my blog has a very “zen” feel to it in the sense that I try my hardest to promote self love and natural living. Plus I have a slight obsession with self help books that are about making changes to better yourself and better your life.

szen_zone_book_review

When the book came in the mail I couldn’t wait to dive right in! If I hadn’t been so busy I definitely could have read this in one sitting, no problem what so ever. Gary Szenderski ( see what he did there with the “Szen”! So clever ) has a way of writing that makes you feel like you are just sitting down with a cup of really fantastic coffee chatting with him about life. And I LOVE that.

Szen Zone is one of those books that you’ll want to keep with you at all times in your purse or in your car because it’s not a book that you necessarily have to read cover to cover. You can open it up to any page, any short story, you want and be provided with major inspiration or advice. Especially when regarding CHANGE of any kind.

The thing I love most about this book is that each piece of writing seems to just come to you at the perfect time. Like whatever I was going through while reading each section I kept thinking to myself, “oh my god, how did he know?” It was the exact piece of advice, inspiration, or encouragement I needed to get through the doubt or struggle I was experiencing at the time.

Gary’s writing makes you feel like you CAN come out of any situation with a positive change made in your life. And it’s an absolutely wonderful feeling.

Change is inevitable. We alllll need to accept that, sometime or another, as hard as that may be. But why not make them all positive changes?

You can pick up this book and read any page, any story, and be touched on so many levels. I would describe reading this book as having your mom and your best friend there for you for a conversation or advice at the turn of a page, any time of day.

I recommend this book so whole heartedly to each and every one of you. And I know I recommend a lot of books to ya’ll, but if you take any advice from me, it’s to read this book.

I promise you will not be disappointed in any way, shape, or form.

Would ya’ll like it if I did a giveaway with a copy of this book?

XO, Madison.

February Reading List

Ya’ll! Happy February 1st! How is everyone’s 2017 going so far? I personally can’t believe how quickly it’s gone by so far! I know, I know, it’s only been one month LOL but to me, the month of January went by in like 5 seconds. But I’m ok with it because February is one of my favorite months of the year! Partly because it starts to feel a little more like spring here in Texas and also because it’s the month of LOVEEE. I just love love. Every single kind of love is beautiful and should be celebrated every single day, not just days dedicated to it, but a whole day all for love? I mean c’mon, that’s just perfect!

Since I decided in 2017 all of the Bliss And Bubbly monthly reading lists would have a theme, I figured “love stories” was beyond appropriate for February. I’ve read three of the books on this list so I’m super excited to dive into the ones I haven’t.

February_Reading_List

  1. Pride And Prejudice By Jane Austen: This is one of my favorite books of all time. It’s a classic. It’s beautifully written. It will make you ball your eyes out ( or maybe just me because literally everything makes me cry… ). It’s a story of first impressions, friendship, jealously, and love. Basically will be relevant in all of our lives, no matter what stage of life we are in. This is one of those books that, in my opinion, everyone needs to read at least once in their lives. Why not today?
  2. Water For Elephants By Sara Gruen: This is the second book on this list that I have read and I highly recommend it. It’s a very unlikely love story about the relationship between people and people and people and animals, specifically an elephant in a circus. It’s set back in time and is told through the memories of the 90 year old main character. It’s a story of overcoming your situation and the obstacles that life throws at you and of love and friendship.
  3. Someday Someday, Maybe By: Lauren Graham: First of all, I’m fully obsessed with Lauren Graham. Between Gilmore Girls, Parenthood, and Talking As Fast As I Can… She’s one of those famous people that I just feel like are one of my best friends, ya know? This is her first Novel and it’s a story of having huge hopes and dreams while being young trying to make it in NYC. It’s about finding yourself and finding love, and trying to balance it all at the same time as trying to become a successful actress. It is a fiction book but I can’t help but think that maybe there is just a little truth or inspiration from her real life? We’ll see!
  4. Sweetbitter By Stephanie Danler: I’ve recommended this book before on Instagram and I’ll just keep on recommending because it’s just that good. It’s the story of a young woman trying to rise in the ranks of the NYC restaurant scene. As her tastes in food and wine become sharper, so does her taste for love. But there’s a major twist! Oh, the suspense is killing you, I know! LOL. This is the perfect book to curl up with on a Sunday afternoon and just get lost in the world of someone else for a little while.
  5. Everything We Keep By Kerrie Lonsdale: This is the story of truly devastating loss, when a woman’s fiancé disappears in a boating accident, but then the euphoria of finding love again. Also dives into the secrets that our loved ones dare to keep, in order to keep us safe. Love & a mystery in one? My kind of book for sure!
  6. A Book About Love By Jonah Lehrer: This is the only “self help” type of book I put on this list, but I think it will be such a good one! He weaves together scientific studies with real life to dive into the most mysterious, most important impulse, most confusing, most compelling part of  human life: LOVE.

I can’t wait to get into some of these this weekend! One book I didn’t include on this list, but is my favorite book EVER, is The Bridges Of Madison County. Thats the book I read if Im happy, sad, excited, bored, you name it. I’ve probably read it 100 times by now and I will definitely read it at least 100 more. I usually have it in my purse. Weird, I know, it’s just that good.

I hope that you all have a wonderful, love filled Wednesday! Any great love stories that I didn’t put on the list for this month?

XO, Madison.

January Reading List

Happy Wednesday! How is everyone doing? The weather in Texas has gone back up to the 60’s and 70’s which is amazing for my mood but not so amazing for my allergies. I cannot stop sneezing so if anyone has any natural remedies for allergies that I might not have tried yet PLEASE send them my way!

Now it’s time for my January Reading List! Did anyone read any of the books from my December Reading List? With it being the beginning of the year I think everyone is in the mind set of wanting to better themselves in one way or another, so the theme I chose for this month’s books will help you do just that: better yourself.

Enjoy!

January_Reading_List

  1. Platform: How To Get Noticed In A Noisy World By: Michael Hyatt – In this book Michael Hyatt gives the reader a behind the scenes look at social media success. He shares what best selling authors, musicians, entrepreneurs and other creative influencers are doing differently. He speaks from experience because he writes one of the top 800 blogs in the world! Perfect read for any other bloggers or social media influencers out there.
  2. SkinnyTaste Fast & Slow: Knockout Quick Fix & Slow Cooker Recipes By: Gina Homolka – I got this cookbook for Christmas this year and was SO excited about it. I don’t think that slow cooker meals have to be reserved for winter months only. I mean, let’s be honest. Life is hectic, busy and crazy almost always, and slow cooker dinners are the easiest option. This cookbook also has “quick fix” recipes that are not slow cooker, just super easy and quick to make. Plus they’re all super healthy and great options for any of you out there trying to eat healthy this New Year!
  3. The Subtle Art Of Not Giving A F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach To Living A Good Life By: Mark Manson – In this book Mark Manson explores the idea of not being so “positive” all the time, so that we may actually become better, happier people. Basically, he just gets really REAL about life not always being awesome, and how accept that, deal with it, and move on in the best way possible. Sign me up.
  4. The One Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth Behind Extraordinary Results By: Gary Keller – If you want to take the first step in changing your life I think this would be the first book to read. He gives a very simple, very powerful concept on how to focus on what matters most in your work and personal life. Sounds easy enough, right? But I think we all have a hard time with that and this could really be helpful!
  5. The Miracle Morning: The Not-So-Obvious Secret Guaranteed to Transform Your Life (Before 8 AM) By: Hal Elrod – You’d think this would be simple enough, or something that we all do already, but I don’ think that is always the case. Elrod teaches us what steps we need to take in order to wake up each day with more motivation, focus and energy to be our best, most successful selves. A favorite quote of the book is: “Wake up to your full potential.” I just love that! I’m feeling inspired already.
  6. The Defining Decade: Why Your 20’s Matter – And How To Make The Most Of Them By: Meg Jay – Meg Jay is a clinical psychologist who believes that the generation of twenty something’s does matter. She combines the science of the twenty something years with behind – closed – door stories of twenty something’s themselves. She provides the tools needed to make the most of our twenties and shows us how work, relationships, personality, social media, and even our brains, can change and define our lives more than any other time of adulthood.

Let me know if you guys read any of these, and tell me what you think! I’m excited to dive into all of these this month!

Does anyone have a fave self-help book I didn’t put on this list?

XO, Madison.

Let’s Cozy Up With A Book? December Reading List

Happy Monday everybody! I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving Holiday weekend with your friends & families. I always look forward to long days relaxing with the people I love, and eating plenty of leftovers. If you’re feeling in need of a little detox ( I know I am! ) try making my Bliss And Bubbly Spicy Detox Drink a few mornings this week! And don’t forget, we get to do it all over again in a few weeks for Christmas!

If you’ve been reading along, you know that Christmas is my favorite Holiday of all time. I say that Christmas is a “season” though, not just one day, because I want to keep the spirit, the smells, the food, the lights & decorations, going for as long as I can! The whole month of December is basically celebration after celebration for me and my family, though. We have my little sisters birthday, my birthday, my boyfriends sister’s daughter’s birthday, Christmas, and then my boyfriends birthday. PHEW! It can get stressful but I wouldn’t have it any other way. Celebrating my favorite people during my favorite time of year is not something I will ever complain about!

Since the temperatures are finally cooling off a little bit ( welcome to Texas ) and we are all about to have lots of time off again, I thought instead of doing just one book review, I would share my December Reading List with you guys.

Bliss And Bubbly's December Reading List - Let's cozy up with a few good books together?

  1.  Scrappy Little Nobody By: Anna Kendrick: As a long time lover of miss Anna Kendrick I was really excited when she decided to come out with a memoir. I have a weird obsession with celebrity memoirs and I don’t really know what that says about me… but I also don’t really care. She is hilarious and I cannot wait to read about her life.
  2. On Writing By: Stephen King: As a long time writer, I am extremely interested in other successful writer’s processes, tips & tricks. Who better to read all about writing than from Mr. Stephen King himself, right?
  3.  I’ll Tell You In Person By: Chloe Caldwell: Chloe Caldwell wrote a collection of essays from her perspective and from her personal life and it is supposed to be very eye opening for women in their twenties ( hiii! ) Nylon Magazine said, “… a journal from the front lines of being a woman.” I can’t wait to get into this one!
  4. It’s Not Okay By: Andi Dorfman: Alright, where are my Bachelor/Bachelorette fans at?! This ones for you! My mom, sister’s and I, have watched the show since I can remember. I love cozying up with a glass of wine on Monday nights with my mom and gossiping while watching the show. Andi’s season was one of my favorites and I still follow her on social media. I cannot wait to read all the juicy details about what really went down with Juan Pablo! I know I’m not alone in that one LOL.
  5. Talking As Fast As I Can By: Lauren Graham: My obsession with Gilmore Girls ( by the way, who watched the revival this weekend?! SO GOOD I CRIED SO MUCH ) and Parenthood, resulted with a love for Lauren Graham. She needs to be in more shows or movies so I can see more of her! Who’s with me? Anyways, her first book ( I am crossing my fingers that there will be more ) is coming out tomorrow and you know it’s been pre ordered in my Amazon cart for months….
  6. Year Of Yes By: Shonda Rhimes: Oh Shonda, Shonda, Shonda. Making us cry with her shows on ABC for years now. I don’t know about ya’ll but I LIVE for Greys Anatomy and Scandal. I mean she is a GENIUS at making you feel all the emotions, all at one time. It’s insane. But I can’t stop, ya know? Her book is sure to be very inspiring and totally amazing. I cannot wait to read it. I’ll be sure to let you guys know how many times I cry LOL.

Now the question is…. WHICH ONE TO READ FIRST???

Let me know if you want to read any of these together! I’m always up for a little cyber book club action. Cozying up by the fireplace with a great book and the Christmas tree lit up in the background is my idea of perfection.

What are ya’ll reading this December?

XO, Madison.

THE LIFE CHANGING MAGIC OF TIDYING UP By: Marie Kondo

The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo is a LIFE CHANGING read.

The Life Changing Magic of Tidying up is a LIFE CHANGING read.

Marie Kondo is a professional cleaning consultant. Can we just talk about how fantastic it is that that is an actual job?? Anyways, just like the back of the book promises, she will give you the tools to take your tidying and organizing to a whole new level and it feels fantastic.

The whole basis of tidying up your house is to begin feeling better and “tidier” in all other aspects of your life as well. I think most people feel like tidying up their space is a bit daunting but it totally doesn’t have to be!

Marie says start with one THING not one room or one section of the house. For example, start with organizing all the cleaning products in every single room and maybe consolidate them into one organized section of a cabinet in the kitchen, or wherever you use them most.

Marie gives tons and tons more extremely easy to use and even easier to implement tips & tricks in this fabulous read.

Just in time for the holidays where guests and family members sharing your space are a guarantee, right?

Buy it HERE from Amazon and get to tidying, people!

XO, Madison.

#GIRLBOSS By: Sophia Amoruso

“What I hate about luck is that implies being devoid of responsibility. It implies that you can do nothing and then step into success as easily as stepping into a pile of dog poop on the sidewalk. It implies that success is something given to a knighted and often undeserving few. Luck tells us that we don’t control our own fate, and that our path to success or failure is written by someone, or something, entirely outside ourselves. Luck lets us believe that whatever happens, whether good or bad, it’s not our credit or our fault. That is why I don’t buy luck. But I do buy magic.”

BOOK CLUB with Bliss And Bubbly - reviewing #GIRLBOSS by Sophia Amoruso

I wanted to start off the review of #GIRLBOSS by Sophia Amoruso ( Founder & CEO of Nasty Gal if you didn’t know who she was before reading this ) with that excerpt from the book because I feel like it just perfectly encompasses her voice and what she is telling us through her writing.

One of my favorite parts of the whole book she says:

“You get back what you put out, so you might as well think positively, focus on visualizing what you want instead of getting distracted by what you don’t want, and send the universe your good intentions so that it can send them right back.”

HOW GREAT IS THAT?

She tells the story of her life up until now. Allllll the gory details, she literally doesn’t spare a thing. She shares embarrassing stories, admits to tons of shoplifting, eating out of dumpsters, hitchhiking… I mean the list goes on. But her raw determination and passion has clearly always been there. She shares EXACTLY how she started Nasty Gal.

The story is truly amazing and inspiring.

Even if you couldn’t care less about fashion or Nasty Gal itself, I still 100% recommend reading this book. She gives financial advice, life advice & business advice. And it’s all SO relatable and SO easy to apply to your life, almost immediately.

She has a no bullshit policy for her life and for her business and I feel like that’s kind of awesome and maybe something more of us should probably adopt into our lives, maybe?

You can buy it off of Amazon right here and get it in time for the perfect weekend read! 🙂

Let me know what you think!!

xx, Madison.

ADVENTURES FOR YOUR SOUL By: Shannon Kaiser

“Things don’t happen to me, they happen for me” – Shannon Kaiser.

Book Club With Bliss And Bubbly - ADVENTURES FOR YOUR SOUL www.blissandbubbly.com

Wow, wow, wowza. This book took me through all the emotions, let me tell ya. I literally laughed out loud, cried a little bit ( which really isn’t that weird for me to cry while reading a book… ) but mostly I just became extremely MOTIVATED.

Shannon takes you on her journey through life so far starting with basically being homeless and dealing with extreme depression and anxiety, to an office job she couldn’t stand to literally packing up her whole life and buying a one way ticket to Hawaii to find her true happiness ( which just so happens to be travel blogging ).

She gets so REAL. And I couldn’t get enough of it. It’s not often you read a “self help” book that get’s this honest about the lows and the highs and how to make the most out of each and every moment.

If you are struggling even a little tinsy bit with what you want to do, or where you currently are at in life, this is the book you need to order and read immediately. She even has all these fun little questions and worksheet type pages through out the book that really make you think.

Order it from amazon RIGHT HERE.

No seriously, do it right now. You can thank me later.

Who else has some fab self help books like this that they recommend? Please share!!

xx, Madison.

So, What’s Up With The Chinese Energy Clock?

Ok SO, for about a year now I have been dealing with some very painful, and very frustrating issues with my body. Slowly but surely I am figuring out my constant pain is being caused by some form of arthritis/autoimmune issue. Basically this is something that I am going to be dealing with for the rest of my life, and that was a hard thing to accept. I definitely cry about it – often. But I am also doing everything I can to make myself better and to manage it. The other week my chiropractor introduced me to the CHINESE ENERGY CLOCK.

You’ve heard of your CHI, right? Simply put, chi ( or energy ) is your basic life force. ( It is also the basis of acupuncture, which I will soon be experiencing for my first time, and I’ll do on a post on it for sure ). If your chi is strong you are alert and present in all aspects of life. If your chi is weak, or blocked, all kinds of problems arise.

Developing, or increasing your chi results in your ability to quickly overcome illness, you become more vibrant, and your mental capacity increases. Having balanced, uninterrupted chi flow throughout your body equals pain free, optimal health. Obviously optimal health is amazing, but the result I am working toward is PAIN FREE.

I found THIS BOOK on Amazon and read in literally 20 minutes and my life changed. It’s not even 50 pages long and it’s definitely the most informative, easy to read, most important book I’ve ever purchased.

ALL ABOUT CHI & how it effects every single aspect of your life - yes PLZ.

It outlines streches and daily habits to go along with the 24 hour cycle of chi, and makes it SO EASY. It explains everything in the simplest of terms, and there are even pictures of the streches so you can make sure you are doing them correctly.

This book completely changed my daily routine, and how I’ll be living my life from this day forward. I cannot wait to see how much better I start to feel in every aspect of my every day life.

Interested?? Get this book TODAY. I promise it will change your life and you will wish you read it sooner. I know I did.

xx, Madison

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