November 2013: In Review

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November is one of those months that as I sit down to sum it up I’m thinking “Seriously? This all happened in the last 30 days??” Honestly it seems really impossible. But apparently it all did so let’s try to make some sense of it.

Another successful marathon cheering day in the books. Why did no one tell me my hair looked so odd in the back?

I started out the month heading into Brooklyn to see friends and, most importantly, watch the NYC Marathon. It’s one of my favorite NYC traditions and it was nice to be able to still go even though I no longer live two blocks from the route. On that trip I also got to have drinks and lunch with the lovely Estelle. I had such a great time with her and I wish we lived closer and could hang out more often!

That Wednesday I rocked the GRE. Well, I rocked the verbal section and held my own on the math (expected) and writing (disappointing) sections.


Sadly the next week my grandfather passed away. I mentioned last month that he was not doing well, he went into hospice at the beginning of the month and he passed away early on the morning on November 12th. It’s been really hard for everyone, obviously, but seeing how he was at the end made it clear that it was his time to go. I can attribute so many of the great parts of my personality to him (my love of reading, my interest in sports, my love of history, the fact that I’m a generous tipper (the man seriously tipped everyone enormous amounts), among other things) and even though I still tear up when I think about how he’s gone it’s because I remember all of the good times I was lucky enough to have with him.


I headed back into New York City the week after the funeral to see a Catching Fire with friends (AMAZING!) and in addition to having lunch with other friends and walking all over the damn city (seriously, my suburban feet can’t handle it like I used to) I also went to the David Zwirner Gallery to check out the Yayoi Kusama exhibit. I had been in one of her infinity rooms at the Phoenix Art Museum several years ago and had been blown away by it. My old boss told me about the show at the Zwirner Gallery and I knew I wanted to check it out. I didn’t expect the lines to be totally insane. We waited for about half an hour to get into the room above which is called Love Is Calling and were too late to get into the other infinity room. I highly recommend checking out her infinity rooms (her paintings don’t do much for me) if they ever come to a museum or gallery by you.


Thanksgiving morning I did my annual Turkey Trot. I’ve been feeling really unfit lately (see funeral eating, walking around NYC with my suburban feet), but I’m happy to say I only finished a minute and 33 seconds slower than last year! Considering that the last time I ran three miles at once was probably last Thanksgiving I’ll take it. My dad once again was king of the old people runners and won his age group for the fifth year in a row.


My family had a lovely Thanksgiving feast. Normally about 15 people go over my grandparents, but with my grandfather’s passing that wasn’t happening this year. We did a smaller celebration with just my parents, brother, grandmother, and aunt. I did a lot of the cooking, clockwise from top left: Classic Roast Chicken, Caramelized Onion Mashed Potatoes, Vegan Shepard’s Pie, Pan-Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Pecans and Romano Cheese, Bread Stuffing with Black Pepper and Vinegar, Lightened Up Fresh Green Bean Casserole, and Sage Butter Biscuits. My mother is a vegan and my dad and brother are vegetarians, which is why we had a small chicken rather than a bigger turkey. I made the Brussels sprouts vegan (not butter or cheese) and the mashed potato recipe is already vegan and even though I was nervous about it they were hands down the best potatoes I’ve ever made. And so easy!

Favorite Crap from the Internet:

Joe Biden loves sandwiches from Deleware. And apparently doesn’t carry much cash. (Bonus from exactly a year ago: Joe Biden goes shopping at Costco)

Most offensively named beauty products. I realize it’s not really funny, but it so is.

Things People with Curly Hair are Tired of Hearing: #5 is the reason I don’t straighten my hair any more

Favorite spam comment: (I LOVE spam comments): “I simply had to appreciate you once more. I’m not certain the things I might have carried out in the absence of the type of ways revealed by you regarding this problem. Previously it was a distressing dilemma in my view” – Coffee Grinders Advice

Reviews on the Blog:
5 Stars:
Sex & Violence by Carries Mesrobian

4 Stars:
How to Love by Katie Cotugno
Not a Drop to Drink by Mindy McGinness
Splendor by Elana K. Arnold
Things I Can’t Forget by Miranda Kenneally

3 Stars:
Allegiant by Veronica Roth
Catching Jordan by Miranda Kenneally
– Crash Into You by Katie McGarry
The Naturals by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Racing Savannah by Miranda Kenneally
Six Months Later by Natalie D. Richards
Stealing Parker by Miranda Kenneally
This Song Will Save Your Life by Leila Sales

Top Ten Tuesday Posts:
Sequels I Can’t Wait to Get My Hands On
Covers I Wish I Could Redesign
Books I’d Recommend to a Younger Me
– Things I am Thankful For

Reviews Just Posted on Goodreads:
– Beautiful Beginning by Christina Lauren (3.5 stars)
Deeper by Robin York (3 stars)
Four Seconds to Lose by K.A. Tucker (4.25 stars)
How to Kill a Rock Star by Tiffanie DeBartolo (4 stars)
– No Good Duke Goes Unpunished by Sarah MacLean (3.75 stars)
– Ripped by Sarah Morgan (3.5 stars)
Working It (3.5 stars)

Things I’m Looking Forward to in December:
– Finishing the semester!
– Christmas!
– Sending off my grad school applications!
– Really just finishing the semester!

Books I’m Looking Forward to in December:
The Promise of Amazing
The Redhead Plays Her Hand
(Kind of a slow month for new books…)

How was your November? Good? Bad? In between? What are you looking forward to in December? Any must haves on your Christmas list?

3 thoughts on “November 2013: In Review

  1. You and I had similar months, it seems like… with the passing of our grandfathers. I understand your sadness, as it’s something I am currently going through. But you’re right about remembering the good times. I am, too, lucky to have those.

    I watched my sister run in the turkey trot Thanksgiving morning. Not sure on her time, but I was proud of her! No way do I run, ha.
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