Hey guys! It’s my birthday!
Yes, that’s right, today I am 33.
I know there isn’t anything big or special about 33, but I’m a birthday person, and every year I get older, I do think I gain a little more wisdom and a lot more perspective. So, if you’ll indulge me, here is a list of things I’ve thought about and learned in the past year.
How Much I Value My Physical Well-Being
Look, I’m not saying I’m the healthiest person around, but having sprained my ankle and spent months healing it, only to have it strained again…I’m aware of my physical limitations more at 33. But I’m also aware of how grateful I am that nothing super-serious has touched my life thus far. I don’t take my health for granted anymore.
How I Continue to Discover Things To Learn From and Love
I’ve always been a feminist and someone who cares about women’s issues, but this year, I discovered just how much female empowerment and gender equality matter to me. It’s been surprising and illuminating uncovering my voice on women’s issues in young adult fiction.
How I Still Battle For Perspective, But I’m On the Winning Side Now
Sometimes I get really in my head and into negative cycles, but in the past few years, I’ve been recognizing those cycles a lot more. I’ve been able to say “okay, this is just a bad moment, a bad phase. It will pass.” I’m grateful that I have friends and family who allow me to have those moments and remind me that it’s okay to not be perfect or happy all the time.
Also, it’s been a huge relief to realize that that anxiety has stopped completely about my place in the bookish community – in fact, I feel like my blog and being part of the community has made me care a lot less what others think, and focus more on what I think and care about. So thank you for that, friends!
So. Because you all are awesome, every year, on my birthday, I like to spread the love to my readers, who are with me through all of these milestones, bookish or not, big or small. This year I’m giving away any book that I have reviewed in the last year – so from November 2014 to today. There will be two winners – and yes, this contest is international!
Here is the full list of books you can win!
- Conversations with Katniss: Early Review: Texts From Jane Eyre by Mallory Ortberg ★★★½
- A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray ★★★★½
- "Running the Bases" Review: Whatever Life Throws At You by Julie Cross ★★★½
- “Do You Hear What I Hear?” Mini-Review: Hear Me by Viv Daniels ★★★½
- Early Review: The Boy Next Door by Katie Van Ark
- “Where Do We Begin/The Rubble or Our Sins?” GIVEAWAY + Early Review: All Fall Down by Ally Carter
- GIVEAWAY + Early Review: We Can Work It Out by Elizabeth Eulberg
- “Say You’ll Remember Me” Early Review: Love, Lucy by April Lindner
- Island Escape by Viv Daniels
- “Make Your Own Kind of Music” Early Review: I’m Glad I Did by Cynthia Weil
- “What Do I Stand For?” Early Review: I’ll Meet You There by Heather Demetrios
- “All of The Sadness I Cannot Live With” Review: I Was Here by Gayle Forman
- “Blood Stains, Ball Gowns” Review: Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard
- BLOG TOUR + Review: Losing at Love by Jennifer Iacopelli
- “Handle With Care” Review: Mosquitoland by David Arnold
- Review: 6 Things You Need To Know About The Last Time We Say Goodbye by Cynthia Hand
- “The Last Day on Earth” Early Review: We All Looked Up by Tommy Wallach
- Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli ★★★★
- Review: The Royal We by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan
- “Just A Girl” Review: None of the Above by I.W. Gregorio
- “Unpack Your Heart” Review: Things We Know By Heart by Jessi Kirby
- Omega City by Diana Peterfreund ★★★½
- Five Reasons to Read 5 to 1 by Holly Bodger
- “Are We Out of the Woods Yet?” Review: Halfway Perfect by Julie Cross & Mark Perini
- 5 Things To Know About The Heir By Kiera Cass
- “You’ve Changed”: Hold Me Like a Breath by Tiffany Schmidt
- “I Used to Write” Kissing in America by Margo Rabb
- More Happy Than Not by
- Mini-Reviews: In Which I Read & Love My First Sarah Ockler Book
- “Say What You Want to Say” Every Last Word by Tamara Ireland Stone
- Sexual Violence, Bad Boys and A Court of Thrones and Roses
- Maybe in Another Life by Taylor Jenkins Reid
- Jesse's Girl by Miranda Kenneally
- All We Have Is Now by Lisa Schroeder ★★★
- The Start of Me and You by Emery Lord ★★★★½
- Open Road Summer by Emery Lord ★★★★★
- The Heartbreakers by Ali Novak ★★★★
- Another Day by David Levithan ★★★
- Dumplin' by Julie Murphy ★★★★½
- Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon ★★★★
- Mini-Reviews: Meet the Austins, When the Stars Align & Scarlet
- Meet the Austins by Madeleine L'Engle ★★★★
- When the Stars Align by Jeanette Grey ★★½
- Scarlet by Marissa Meyer ★★★★½
- Juniors by Kaui Hart Hemmings
- The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness ★★★★
- Ten Thousand Skies Above You by Claudia Gray ★★★★½
- The Distance from Me to You by Marina Gessner ★★½
- Illuminae by Amie Kaufman, Jay Kristoff ★★★★½
- The Runaway Princess by Hester Browne ★★★½
- Winter by Marissa Meyer ★★★★★
- Fairest (The Lunar Chronicles, #3.5) by Marissa Meyer ★★★★½
- Just Visiting by Dahlia Adler ★★★★
- Recently in Romance #1: Reviews of Tessa Dare, Sarina Bowen & More!
- Romancing the Duke (Castles Ever After, #1) by Tessa Dare ★★★★
- Say Yes to the Marquess by Tessa Dare ★★★★
- Filthy Beautiful Forever by Kendall Ryan ★★★★
- The Fifteenth Minute by Sarina Bowen ★★★½
- Unteachable by Leah Raeder ★★
- When a Scot Ties the Knot by Tessa Dare
- Now and Again by Jennifer Ellision
- Christmas With a Palace Thief by Nicole Burnham
- Once Upon a Marquess by Courtney Milan
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Thanks for the giveaway and happy birthday!!! 🙂 Something that I have learned about myself is that I have more creativity in me than I thought. 🙂
Happy birthday! This year I learned that being a mom is the most amazing thing.
CONGRATS ON BEING A MOM!
Happy birthday! I’ve learnt that I can actually be a part of the blogging world, and that starting my own blog is an amazing thing. Thanks for the giveaway 🙂
That I’m stronger than I think, and can do anything if I put my mind to it! Happy Birthday 🙂 hope you have a fabulous day filled with happiness! Rosie xx
The happiest of birthdays Tiff ♥ I didn’t realize that we were so close to the same age (I’m 35) I definitely get more introspective around my birthdays and always try to be a better person each year. I love the lessons you’ve shared with us^^ I hope that you’ll have a wonderfully bookish WEEK and good luck to everyone entering the giveaway xx
Happy birthday!! Thanks for the giveaway!
I don’t know if this counts, but this past year, I’ve learned exactly what I want to do with my life, and I’m working on achieving that goal, hopefully in the near future! 🙂
Happy birthday!! This year I’ve finally come to realise that I’m more mentally strong than I think!
That I can do and achieve anything I set my mind on, just have to be persistent. Happy, happy, happy birthday, hoe it’s an amazing one!
Happy Birthday!! Hope 33 is a great year for you!
*throws confetti* Happy birthday!!!! I hope this year is even better than the last for you!
Happy Birthday, Tiff! Can’t wait to celebrate with you. 🙂
One thing that I’ve learned about myself is that I’m stronger than I’ve ever imagined I could be. Since I tend to show emotion rather easily, I was often made to feel like I was somehow weaker than other people by my Nana when I was growing up. Even though I haven’t believed that in a long time, this year has made any small inkling of me that held onto that story about who I am disappear.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, TIFF! Wishing you lots of love and joy on your birthday, and the many years to come <3 Let's see… In the past year, I've learned to simply define my own boundaries. I used to have a hard time saying no, or standing up for myself (in terms of what I liked/didn't like, what I enjoyed/didn't enjoy). But now? I've found it easier to stand up and be more confident in who I am, what I like and what I don't.
Thanks so much, Alexa. I still have a hard time saying no to stuff, so I’m really glad you’ve learned that. I feel like that shows in your blogging a lot – your reviews are so confident now! It’s refreshing to be so honest, right?
Happy Birthday!! And thanks for the giveaway!
Happy Birthday! I turned 33 in September and I have learned that I am a very patient person. I have also learned I don’t have the best memory, which is not a good thing. I hope your birthday is everything you hope it to be. Thank you so much for sharing the love with a fabulous giveaway.
Happy Birthday ayeeee! 🙂 I did learn how to stand up for myself which is actually pretty amazing! 🙂
One thing I’ve learnt about myself this year is how I should trust my instincts and myself first, because after all I know myself best, don’t I? Thank you for the generous chance and a happy birthday! 😀
That is a lot of books! The one thing I have learned this year is that I really need to not take my health for granted. I’ve due to numerous illnesses (like pneumonia) I’ve broken my ribs and have been bed-ridden so many times (like right now) and it is frustrating and painful. I feel particularly bad for my three small daughters who are always worried about me now and afraid to touch me because they think I’m always broken. 🙁 I’m really hoping that 2016 will be better health-wise.
Ugh, that’s so rough, Melanie. Thanks for sharing – I feel the same with my ankle. 2015 hasn’t been the best for me in terms of health either, but I really hope that your daughters will realize that they – and you – can get past this together. Crossing my fingers for 2016 to be better for both of us!
I have learned that I really really do not like change! It gives me nightmares!
Oh geez – that’s a hard one! I get nightmares about change sometimes, too…do you do breathing exercises? They help sometimes…
No I’ve never really did them because I’ve never had nightmares before. I’m hoping I won’t have those nightmares again!
Yikes, me too – hope they’ve gone away for good!
Happy 33! I got there in July, and I have learned that I get tired early now. Like, 10PM, I am ready for bed! And I am more willing to listen and learn as I get older.
Bahahahaha, I should be going to bed way earlier, too. That’s such a good, practical lesson to learn. Teach me how to go to bed earlier!
I am still trying to figure it out! I am ready for bed at 10, but I am on the computer until my eyes are almost impossible to keep open… SO I just taught myself a lesson! Put the computer down, the post can be finished TOMORROW!
I…clearly have not figured it out. Passing out with my phone in my hands. Grr.
Happy Birthday Tiff! This year I’ve learned to be more determined and to not underestimate myself. Confidence is key! Thanks for the giveaway!
EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. I feel like I keep pushing for that all the time. Hope it’s working out and giving you a lot of success, Jen!
Happy Birthday, Tiff! This year, I’ve been learning a lot about myself as a person, and specifically, I have been discovering and coming to terms with my sexuality. 🙂
Wow, congrats, Madalyn – that’s huge. I hope everything’s going really well and you’re getting a lot of support from family and friends. You go, girl!
Happy belated birthday! I learned something new about my body, but I don’t want to share anything specific about it. It’s not a topic everyone likes to discuss or even see.
Hi Alyn, thanks for your comment – I hope what you learned was positive and good and makes you feel good about yourself. If it doesn’t, I hope you keep on pushing to find a way to accept. All the best!
My boyfriend of 8 years left me this year. I learned I can be alone and happy 🙂
YAY! YES YOU CAN! Congrats on being single and happy – it’s a great feeling, right?
One thing I’ve learned is that just because *some* people don’t see my full value/potential doesn’t mean that it’s nonexistent and to not dwell on the people that don’t fully appreciate you.
So glad you’re learning that, Amanda – confidence in yourself is so darn important. I’m still learning that every day.
Thanks for the giveaway! I’ve learned that I can handle my anxiety and stress really well if I change certain habits- and it made such a better year 🙂
I have learned that I need to get out of the house for a little bit every day, even just for a tiny amount of time.
I’m glad you’ve gotten that perspective. I’ve learned not to be so critical of myself over the past year. Those are hard lessons, but they’re the best we can have!
Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction
I learned that I have a face I make when I don’t think something is a good idea. I had no clue that I made a face.
One thing I’ve learned this year is…I’m not as bad at adulting like I thought. I was one of those post-college adults who took a while to get back on her feet and be stable. I didn’t like admitting that I was 26 and still living at home. It took leaving a very toxic relationship it felt like I was making something of myself. In less than a year, I paid off nearly $2,000 of credit card debt, purchased my very own car (with an interest rate of 1.99% because I got my credit back to a better place), moved out of my mom’s house and into my very own apartment. OH! And I have a saving account again! What a relief. I feel like I’m accomplishing things again.
Oh my gosh! Congrats, Jackie on being an incredibly self-sufficient adult! These are incredible accomplishments! Just to let you know…it took me until I was 27-28 until I got a really decent job, and I’m still paying off college loans, so congrats on getting out of that relationship and being awesome. Thanks for your comment!
This is amazing! Happy belated birthday!
Happy Belated Birthday! During the past year, I found out that my parents were right about a lot of things when I was growing up – and I find myself saying the same things all the time now!
Ha! Parents! I hate it when they’re right and I have to admit it!
Happy Birthday! Over the last year I’ve learned that it’s up to me to be happy and not let other people’s attitudes bring me down, definitely something for me to focus on during the holiday season. Thanks for the giveaway!
That is a really hard one to learn, and a great one. It’s one of the things I struggle most with, I’m so glad you’re so aware of it now!
May your thirties be filled with fun and good books!
I’ve learned so many things in the last year, one being that it’s important to know when you have to just say “no” and not spread yourself too thin in your commitments.
Thanks for the awesome giveaway!
I feel like I learn that every day of my life. It’s a hard lesson to learn, huh? I’m still learning it.
One thing that I’ve learned in the past year is to speak out and share your opinion because you do matter.
What a great giveaway!
One thing I’ve learned about myself is that I really can do anything I set my mind to.
Happy birthday! One thing I’ve learnt about myself this year is that I should be more confident. Thanks for the chance!
Happy belated birthday! I’ve learned that you can never really know yourself 100% because we’re always growing and changing.
I think I’ve learned that you shouldn’t give up before really giving it your all, and that I can be wrong about a lot of things.
Happy belated! I seriously love this post! It is so important to reflect on yourself and continue to learn and grow!
The biggest thing I learned this year about myself is my ability to love which I am still learning about. This year has given me so many ups and downs, I’m still just trying to navigate through it all.
Something I’ve learned about myself this past year is that I’m not as devastated by failure as I thought I’d be.