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Since the year started, I knew March was going to be incredibly busy, and it certainly was. It felt like almost every moment of my time was booked, but I still managed to enjoy myself every step of the way.

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My month started with a visit to the Flower and Garden Festival. I headed to Epcot for a blissful morning of plant appreciation before taking off to Bradenton.

I spent several days in Bradenton with my grandparents and my sister who was visiting on her spring break.

My next Florida visitors were two of my best friends from Ohio. We had a lovely weekend at Disney, and I was so honored to be part of an incredibly magic moment as I photographed their proposal!

The following weekend was the start of my spring break. I drove up to Cincinnati and spent a few lovely (but cold!) days there with family and friends before feeling incredibly homesick (and cold!) and cutting my trip short.

(As you can tell, we were big on selfies this month!)

After driving the whole stretch back home, I arrived Friday morning around 7; I unpacked, showered, and headed to Magic Kingdom. After 21 hours in the car, I wanted nothing more than to be at Disney!

I spent the rest of my spring break weekend enjoying Disney and finally discovering downtown Kissimmee.

March ended with another trip to Bradenton, where my grandparents knew I needed to relax after a hectic month; they had recorded the week’s episodes of Jeopardy and were waiting to watch them with me. A binge session of Jeopardy was a great way to end the month!

Goal: Portrait Photography

In terms of my goals, I was hardly home at all throughout the month, so the main thing I wanted to accomplish in March was to work on taking photos of people. I love taking photos of architecture and flowers and animals, but I don’t have a lot of practice taking pictures of others.

I still have a lot of work to do, but you gotta start somewhere, and I had a great time taking photos of all these beautiful people!

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What I’ve Been Reading

I hardly had a moment to sit down this month, so I didn’t end up reading the printed word, but I did listen to some great audiobooks, listed below.

What I’ve Been Listening To

The Force Awakens by Alan Dean Foster: This was just the novelization of the movie, but I loved it. I’ve mentioned it before, but all the Star Wars audiobooks have great sound effects and music. They are fantastic listening experiences, and this one was no different.

Postcards from the Edge by Carrie Fisher: I had ordered a copy from the library in December, and when it finally became available to me this month, I devoured it in a day. Though it was fiction, you could hear Carrie’s life experiences and distinct wittiness shining through. Very glad to have read it.

The Sandcastle Girls by Chris Bohjalian: I don’t particularly like war novels, but they are certainly important in helping me conceptualize important parts of history. This book gave me some background on the Armenian genocide, which I had known almost nothing about.

Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide by Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn: This book was published in 2009, and I found that a lot of the information seemed a little dated. The world has changed a lot in the past 8 years, and women’s place in it has evolved as well. The book opened my eyes to several issues that women around the world are facing, but I would not cite the statistics in this book, as much of the information contradicted what I have learned more recently.

Euphoria by Lily King: I couldn’t believe how spellbound I was by this little book. This was a fictionalized account of Margaret Mead’s adventures in New Guinea, and while her work as an anthropologist was fascinating enough, the love triangle that took place in this book was also very gripping.

The Grace of Kings by Ken Liu: I went into this book expecting that it would be like a Chinese-inspired Game of Thrones. And that’s exactly what it turned out to be, but I forgot that while I love fantasy shows, I don’t usually enjoy reading fantasy. I wanted so badly to enjoy this book, but I ended up being very bored by it.

As You Wish: Inconceivable Tales from the Making of The Princess Bride by Cary Elwes: Yes, I teared up several times. Yes, I finished this and promptly re-watched the movie. The audiobook was read by the cast, and it was truly touching. Anybody who likes the movie Princess Bride should give this a listen.

Rosemary: The Hidden Kennedy Daughter by Kate Clifford Larson: In one of my college psych classes, I had learned about Rosemary Kennedy being lobotomized. That did not make this book any less harrowing. Despite how difficult it was to read about the cluelessness of the medical professionals and the Kennedy family in dealing with Rosemary’s intellectual disability, it was definitely something I’m glad to have read to build my background knowledge on the subject.

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The Girl of Hummingbird Lane by Lisa See: I love Lisa See and was so excited to see she had a new book coming out this month. Though it took me about halfway into the book until I felt fully invested, the rest of the book was absolutely enthralling. See is a phenomenal storyteller, and I always learn so much from her books.

The Beauty and the Beast soundtrack: Honestly, I could have probably listened to 3 or 4 more audiobooks this month, but I instead chose to fill my “ear time” with this phenomenal music. There was one day that I got ready and listened to nothing but Evermore on repeat. It probably played at least a dozen times in a row. Still not sick of it. ❤

What I’ve Been Watching

Kong: Skull Island: I went into the theater knowing I was going to love this, and it did not disappoint. It was visually compelling, the monsters were great, and you could feel the Apocalypse Now influence.

Beauty and the Beast: Despite feeling like Hollywood is overdoing it on the live-action remakes, I was excited to see Disney’s take on my favorite childhood movie. And as expected, I LOOOOOOOVED every moment of this movie. The costumes were phenomenal, it was true to the time period, the old and new songs blew me out of the water, and Emma Watson was (as always) spellbindingly beautiful. Many tears were shed!

On the Blog:

Love, Elizabeth