My April

my-april

Hi people! Well, April has come to an end and for once I can say I really enjoyed the month and actually managed to get quite a bit done so I’m not shrieking “where did the time go” as I usually am when I begin writing these recap posts.

Let’s take a look at what’s been going on in my life since my last recap.

April was a perfect spring month. If you’re following me on Instagram, you will have seen that everything is blooming here and we’ve been taking advantage of the nice weather and doing lots of short weekend trips. It’s been rainy and cold for the last week and now we also have snow, which is horrible. I hope all the trees and flowers will be okay.

My birthday was on the 24th, so go check out that post if you haven’t already – I’m doing a giveaway! I also made a Powerpuff Kaja, so that’s cool. :) Note: this is probably the first ever gif used on this blog.

animated-kaja

In Kiddo news: he got chicken pox! It wasn’t too bad, he hasn’t scratched any of them off so he’ll have no scars or anything. His soft fair skin will soon be back to normal. He’s talking a lot, like full sentences, but I guess most people still have trouble understanding him because he’s abbreviating words or pronouncing them in his own way (as toddlers do). He knows colors now and loves animals, big machines (think excavators and bulldozers) and Legos (well, Duplos).

In future baby news: it’s a boy! :) Yep, we found out this month when I had the big ultrasound checkup. So far, everything seems to be going fine (as far as the doctor could tell, they’re sure to tell you the exam isn’t 100% conclusive). I can feel him kicking every day and it seems like he’s a pretty active little guy. A funny thing I don’t remember from the first pregnancy: he gets low into my side and kicks there and it tickles! From the inside. So weird. I’m really ticklish so this shouldn’t surprise me but who would have thought, right?

In reading news: just finished The Martian, which was my first Sci-Fi novel in a while and I really enjoyed it! It’s the best book I read this month. I’ll be reviewing it soon, so come check back if you want to discuss it with me. No spoilers for others, though! :) Other than that, I liked Charlie All Night by Jennifer Crusie, it’s a very nice contemporary romance, I re-read Coraline and reviewed it, and I read Maresi, which is a very interesting Finnish feminist fantasy (I read the English translation and I’ll be reviewing it soon). I read a couple of other books but nothing that really stuck with me.

In book buying news: I’m trying so hard to keep my book spending to a minimum! Not because I’m broke but because I own so many unread books. I’m doing… okay, I guess? I got Rogue by Julie Kagawa, which was a Kindle deal and is the second part of the series that I want to finish, then I bought 3 contemporary romances, which were all pretty cheap, but still count. *sigh* I also just pre-ordered A Court of Mist and Fury but that will count as a May expense. :) Let’s say I have some reading to do before I get to order more books, which is a pity because I want to buy SO MANY! I only got one ARC this month (I limited my requests severely): it’s And I Darken by Kiersten White. I read her Illusions of Fate a while ago and I really liked it, so I’m curious about this one.

srcek

What I wrote about:

I’m planning on doing a challenge & resolution recap soon but I’m honestly afraid of it because I’m pretty sure I’m failing badly with both. Ugh.

srcek

Link love:

Well, this looks like a slow link share month. Have you found anything interesting lately?

srcek

How was your April? 

What was the best book you read? Did you buy anything interesting?

I’d love to hear from you! :)

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  • Penni @ Penni’s Perceptions

    Congrats! And Happy Birthday again!

    • Thanks, Penni! :)

  • Ending a month shrieking is never a good sign so glad this month was different:). Can’t wait to read your review of The Martian! Mark Watney is one of my book boyfriends. P.S. Yes, fictionally speaking I endorse polygamy.

    • Yep, I’m glad April was more relaxed than usual. This probably means that May will be hectic but so far I’m pretending that everything’s fine. :)

      And yeah, Watney is great! :D He’s such a fun narrator, I loved his snark and resourcefulness. Fictional polygamy is a must, I could never choose just ONE man. Although Mr. Darcy makes a compelling argument for monogamy…

  • Greg Hill

    Snow?? Yikes- glad the rest of the month was good. I think I’d freak if I saw snow now.. but hey you never know. Anything can happen here. Congrats on the boy news. :)

    I read a short story by Kiersten white and liked it, but I haven’t read any of her other stuff.

    • Yep, snow. It’s all gone now (except for in the mountains) but it caused huge problems. Trees couldn’t take the weight (because they already have leaves) and there are broken branches everywhere. Farmers are also reporting damage. Freak weather, really.

      And thanks, we didn’t really care about the sex of the baby, I mean, it’s not like you can influence it, so we’re happy with what we’ve got. :)

      I’m looking forward to starting White’s novel, especially because it seems to be a series – I wished Illusions of Fate was longer when I finished it.

  • Jolien @ The Fictional Reader

    The weather here has been the same, sort of. At first, it was sunny and so nice. Flowers everywhere! And then, it started raining. The past week (week and a half) has been so cold, rainy and grey. I’m so sad! Please come back, sun!

    A boy! That’s such exciting news, congrats! :) I never knew a baby kicking could create a ticklish feeling either. Huh, that’s very interesting. My cousin’s little boy is about 5 years old, and he has always been fascinated by cars. He can pass by on the street, recognize each car of a family member and all the brands and such. It’s so fascinating! But I guess not as fascinating as big machines, which must be infinitely cooler.

    I hope you have a great month Kaja!

    • Yep, weather is all over the place. We had snow, then 2 days of brilliant sunshine, and now 2 more days of cold, grey rain. Ugh.

      Yep, pregnancy is a very strange experience. It’s really natural if you think about it in general terms (like we’re all created this way, right?) but it’s also REALLY WEIRD if you think there’s a future human being just kicking around INSIDE MY BELLY. So yeah, even though it’s my second time around, I still feel funny when he kicks. :)

      I wish he was focused more on other things, actually, I never buy him cars or big machine toys because I feel like he gets enough of them from others who think boys should get these kinds of things. Eh. I guess he’ll figure out what he likes on his own eventually but for now he’s pretty much dependent on whatever we provide him with as far as toys are concerned.

  • Congrats re: the kid! And hurrah that you enjoyed The Martian — it was a lot of fun, I might even reread it for Mark Watney’s snark!

    • Thanks! :)

      I need to watch the movie version now, my husband’s been poking me to read it ever since he gobbled it up in a week (that’s quite fast for him) so we can watch it together. Watney’s great, I loved his narration!

  • Wow, check out your April. Loads of things going on. I am with you on the crazy weather as well, we had a nice week last week and then Monday we had rain, snow, hail and a thunderstorm, what is happening with the weather?

    I’m so glad you liked The Martian, it’s good sci-fi and I really enjoyed it. I am jealous of some of your new books as well. I need to buy a Court of Mist and Fury I’ve decided not to preorder (yet).

    And congrats on having a boy, it’s always exciting when you find out the gender (even though they can offer no guarantees), The ticklish thing is weird, though, but then pregnancy is a little bit strange anyway so you should really expect anything.

    Fingers crossed May is just as good (and it warms up because I am really bored of wearing my winter coat).

    • Yeah, weather has been all over the place. That freak snowstorm broke loads of trees, then we got 2 days of blue skies and sunshine and now 2 days of horrible, cold rain. Blech.

      Eh, I figured I was going to buy A Court of Mist and Fury anyway so I might as well contribute to it becoming a bestseller (which it will, right?). And the paperback was discounted as a preorder on BookDepository. :)

      Pregnancy is SO weird. I mean, I know we all start this way but growing a future human being in my belly is really, really strange. And it’s no less weird the second time around. But I kind of like it now that I’m not feeling ill all the time and my crazy super-smell has calmed down a bit.

      • Seems the freak weather is everywhere then. We’ve been experiencing an unexpected heatwave which looks like it broke today with heavy rain and storms this afternoon. Not that I’m complaining about some nice weather.

        And this is true, I need to get around to rereading A Court of Thorns and Roses because it’s been over a year since I last read it and I’m having some memory blanks on it but I may treat myself to Mist and Fury after that. First I need to finish Wrath and the Dawn. Contributing to it being a bestseller is necessary, though. I should probably buy a copy sooner rather than later to do my bit too.

        If I’m being honest, pregnancy freaks me out a little bit because of the idea of another person growing inside you. It’s cool but also very terrifying. When children are born they are dependent upon you raising them, but they are genuinely reliant upon you to survive when you’re pregnant and isn’t that just a crazy thought? At least you’re over the sickness and super-smell issue now and have a chance to enjoy pregnancy. Someone I work with has the worst morning sickness at the moment and she is so excited to be expecting, but she feels terrible constantly and it sucks when you don’t have a chance to properly enjoy it.

        • I thought of rereading ACOTAR but honestly I don’t have the time and I’m sure there will be some recapping at the beginning of ACOMAF. And don’t worry, I think any Maas book will be an automatic bestseller from now on. She’s one of the biggest names in YA lit at the moment if you ask me.

          Oh, there’s nothing weird about being freaked out by pregnancy. I mean, you get used to your body in the two or three decades you’ve been living in it and then everything changes very fast.

          And I think children are dependent on you not just for raising them, they are SO helpless for the first couple of months… I mean, yeah, someone other than the biological mother can take care of them but they’re just little bundles that eat and cry and poop a lot. Good thing they’re adorable! :D But yeah, now I have to think about how the things I do with my body will affect the baby – what I eat and drink, if I sleep enough, if I’m healthy.

          But I think that it’s easy to get sucked into this over-paranoid mood with pregnancy. In the Western world, EVERYTHING you do during pregnancy is closely scrutinized, you get monthly check-ups, ultrasounds, and everyone is always asking you how (and what) you’re doing. I think this obsession with doing “the right thing” (which, by the way, differs wildly from person to person, like some people would have you eat ridiculous things) is becoming too much and it can be really stressful for young mothers – who are overly emotional as it is because their hormones are all over the place. I think it’s really important you do what feels right for you.

          And morning sickness is the worst – I didn’t throw up but this time I felt sick the entire day for 2 months. And it’s hard to focus on enjoying the pregnancy if you’re feeling sick, especially because at the beginning, the foetus is so tiny you can’t even feel it, you just feel crappy for no apparent reason. (I mean, I KNEW logically I was pregnant but it was difficult to keep focusing on the positive when I was lying in my bed, trying to keep down plain bread sticks and peppermint tea).

          • I get so nervous with Maas books now, though. With everything which happens with the Throne of Glass series I am a little wary. he may end up being one of those authors which I love but have to wait 6 months before I venture into her books. I may end up giving up on the idea of reread knowing what I’m like anyway, from what I remember the book begins quite slowly.

            And that’s alright as long as it’s ok to be a bit weirded out by pregnancy. It’s the dependency thing which gets me and it carries on even after they’re born. I agree that the ‘right thing’ is very difficult to claim and I mean it’s always changing as well. It’d be a nightmare always sticking to what’s recommended when no one can decide what’s best.

            And I can imagine, it’s bad enough being sick normally but when you’ve got morning sickness for an unknown amount of time without knowing when you’re going to feel better it can’t be fun.

          • See, no worries about Maas, just take your time, ACOMAF is a #1 NYT bestseller already so no pressure with buying the book. It can’t get any better than this so yeah.

            Mhm, it’s absolutely the scariest thing to know that there’s a little human being who is dependent on you – you have to change his nappies, feed him breakfast and give him affection even if you feel like lying in your bed with the covers over your head. But then it really IS worth it, I mean, not everyone is made to have kids – and not everyone should have them, especially if they don’t want them, but for me, it’s absolutely worth it. Some days are REALLY hard but then most are fantastic so there it is.

  • Maraia

    I’m a bit envious that you had a real spring. We went from winter (30°F and snowing) to summer (high 80s) in the span of two days. I’m not jealous of your current snow, though. :P

    I love your kiddo updates. He’s getting to such a fun age. Also, in some ways it’s nice that you’re having a boy—it makes hand-me-downs super easy! Their birthdays will be relatively close together, right? (Or am I way off? xD) That also makes it easier. (I say all this not from personal experience but from talking with my friend who has a 2 1/2-year-old and a 7-month-old.)

    I’m so glad you liked The Martian! I enjoyed it as well. The best books I read this month were The Raven King and The Lost & Found. I shouldn’t be tempting you with more new books, but I highly recommend the latter. My favorite audiobook was a German audio drama—it was my first one for adults, and it was fantastic!

    I bought a plane ticket, so I guess that’s pretty interesting. ;) (Well, it was a gift, and we used frequent flyer miles, but still, close enough. :P)

    Bahahaha, I’m laughing so hard at the saddest-sounding places on Earth. Every time I think they can’t get any funnier, they do. (#14? Really?)

    • Yep, my due date for Baby is EXACTLY the same as for Kiddo – August 25th. But then Kiddo was a week late so his bday is on Sep 1. We’ll see how close they get. :) And yep, I’m counting on Baby wearing all the same clothes, though you never know, he might be smaller or something? We’ll see.

      Everyone seems to be reading The Raven King this week/month. I still fully intend to read that series someday so I’m working extra hard to avoid any spoilers.

      We’ll talk more about your visit to Europe in an e-mail. I won’t say I’ll be able to travel to Germany in June because I don’t know how my pregnancy will go – and driving alone for 6+ hours is not something I want to do when 7 months pregnant. Planes are also out since most airlines don’t let very pregnant ladies on board because they’re afraid you might go into pre-term labor because of the pressure (and BELIEVE ME, nobody wants to witness a labor on board). :p Anyway, I’ll try to make it work somehow.

      I didn’t check if these places really exist but if they do, Failure Canyon’s my favourite. :D

      • Maraia

        That’s hilarious! I hope for their sakes that they end up on different days, if not in different months.

        I really hope you can avoid spoilers for The Raven Cycle. *crosses fingers*

        Sounds good! (I know it might not be possible because of the timing, but we should at least try. And if not…I guess I’ll just have to come back. ;D)

        • Yep, people keep hinting that we “planned this really well” but you can’t really plan babies that exactly. :D I like Kiddo’s bday because Sep 1 is the day school starts every year – unless it’s a weekend. I was always excited to go back to school but he might not be as nerdy as I was… :)

  • Brothers! Congrats :)

    And my kids have yet to get chicken pox (knock on wood) but with all the stuff she catches at preschool I know it’s just a matter of time…

    • Thanks! :)

      Don’t parents usually want their kid to get chicken pox as soon as possible? :) My cousin was seriously considering bringing her 3-y-o around when Kiddo was all contagious but changed her mind because they were planning a holiday soon. It wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be, he didn’t have any fever or whatever.

  • Happy belated Birthday Kaja^^ ♥ (I don’t think I sent you my wishes yet but if I did, consider this a retake LOL!) I Power-Puffed myself too and thought it was a lot of fun :D I can’t wait for your review for The Martian^^ and as always, lovely photo up there! Happy May! xxxx

    • Thanks, Micheline! :) I think you did comment on my birthday post, but thank you anyway!

      I sent the PowerPuff generator to a friend of mine – she teaches English in primary school and she decided to use the feature to teach kids vocabulary about clothing and hair and such. :)

      Yep, I need to write the review for The Martian asap, I really, really enjoyed it.

  • Ah, chicken pox–that dreaded rite of passage. Hopefully it won’t last long.

    I look forward to seeing your thoughts on “And I Darken.” I really like Illusions of Fate, but I haven’t read any of White’s other works.

    • Nah, we’re over chicken-pox, he was lucky and it didn’t last long. He’s back in kindergarten again, yay! :) I’m jus happy he got it now he’s little and he didn’t suffer as much – and before Baby is around to catch it from him.

      I have yet to read And I Darken. I enjoyed Illusions of Fate, too, this is why I requested this one in the first place! Fingers crossed it’s good!

  • Soudha Parsan

    I hope you had a great birthday Kaja! And congrats too ^^

    • Thanks, Soudha! :) My birthday was great, I really enjoyed it.

  • Wow, there isn’t even snow in Canada right now (at least not where I am). Hopefully that’ll melt soon and all the plants will be preserved underneath. That’s definitely how snow works…right? ;)

    Duplos are the best, I was absolutely obsessed with them. Kiddo clearly has good taste, haha! Hopefully he can share his Duplos with Baby when the time comes, although maybe he’ll have grown out of them by then. I had no idea that you could be tickled by your baby kicking you. Pregnancy blows my mind from a biological perspective.

    Maresi has got me intrigued, can’t wait to hear your thoughts on that one! You know I love a good feminist fantasy. :)

    • The snow’s all gone but it broke a lot of trees :( I heard the damage to fields and crops and such is also pretty extensive. Stupid weather.

      And yeah, I think he’ll have outgrown them until then. It’ll probably be harder to keep Baby away from Legos until he’s old enough to know he shouldn’t put them in his mouth. *shudder* Kids are THE WORST with this for the first year or so, they put everything in their mouths.

      And yeah, pregnancy is REALLY weird if you think about it. I know it’s like the most natural thing in the world but the knowledge that I am growing a future human inside my uterus is just funky. Tickling is just one of the weird things about it. :)

      My review for Maresi will be up next week. I liked it, actually! It’s slow and not really YA, it has a much more MG feel & topics, but I’m curious about the sequel.