What I Packed in my Hospital Bag


Packing our hospital bag was one of the things I stressed about most during my pregnancy. The only way I had a clue what to bring was by reading blogs, so I thought it might be helpful to share what I packed. I wanted to wait until after Lyla was born so I would know what we actually ended up using. Taking a childbirth class at our hospital was also really helpful because it gave us an idea what the hospital would provide. I highly recommend taking a class if your hospital offers one!

For mom:

-Phone charger

-Toiletry bag (you’ll want your own shampoo, soap, etc. and contact solution & glasses if you wear contacts.)

-Basic skincare products (face wash & moisturizer)

-Makeup (I just brought the basics)

-Nursing bra if you plan to breastfeed

-Nightgown if you want to change while there. I ended up just wearing the hospital gown because I was too exhausted to even think about changing clothes until we were leaving. Make sure it is nursing friendly if you plan to breastfeed.

-Loose outfit for going home. You will still look about six months pregnant at first. If you end up having a C-section, you won’t want anything tight pressing on your incision.

-The biggest pair of shoes you have. Your feet will most likely be even more swollen than they were in pregnancy.

-Grippy socks or slippers for walking around your room

-Sweater or sweatshirt. I ended up not needing mine because it was 100 degrees the day Lyla was born, but it may be cold in your hospital room.

-Pillow & blanket if you want your own. The hospital will provide both.

For dad:

-Phone charger

-Toiletry kit

-Snacks (so he doesn’t have to leave your side during labor but also doesn’t faint from not eating. Make sure they don’t smell too strong in case you have nausea during labor)


-Going home outfit

-Slippers for walking around hospital room

-Pillow & blanket if he wants his own

-Contact solution & glasses if he wears contacts. Andrew’s eyes got so dry he was glad to have his glasses.

-Socks & underwear

-Comfy shoes. He may have to do a lot of walking depending on how large the hospital is.

For baby:

-Onesies in varying sizes (I brought preemie, newborn, & 0-3 month since I wasn’t sure how big she would be. Before we left I donated the preemie onesies to the NICU.)


-Mittens (baby’s nails will probably be long & they’ll want to scratch their face)

-Going home outfit (we just did a plain onesie and wrapped her in a pretty swaddle for photos. Just keep in mind you have to unswaddle for the car seat if you go that route.)

-Portable sound machine. We put this in Lyla’s bassinet and she slept great.

-Nursing cover if you want any type of modesty. People will be in and out of your room constantly.

-Swaddles if you want to change them out of the hospital swaddle. Keep in mind, the American Academy of Pediatrics cautions against swaddle blankets that could come loose during sleep and cover baby’s nose and mouth. The safest options use Velcro or zippers. If you put your baby in a plain swaddle blanket without fasteners, make sure to monitor them closely.

Even with this relatively small list, there were still items we didn’t use. Honestly, our hospital stay was terrible because we couldn’t get ANY sleep with all the people in and out of our room. So there were a lot of things that went out the window, like changing into a nightgown and changing Lyla’s outfit. But every person who took care of us was wonderful, and I’m so thankful for the nurses who helped me! Moms out there, any items that made your hospital stay better? Items you wish you’d left at home? Let me know in the comments!


Lyla’s Nursery Reveal

NDHL1051I’m so excited to share Lyla’s nursery with you! I had so much fun (and a few sleepless nights) putting this room together. Interior design is a great outlet for creativity. I think we all feel like we have an inner Joanna Gaines just waiting to come out! Today I’m sharing my inspiration for her room, how it all came together, and where all the pieces are from.

The inspo:

The first thing I chose for Lyla’s nursery was the color. I love everything pink, but I didn’t want to design a room for me. I also believe in how colors make us feel. I chose a very soft lavender because I knew it would be soothing. 

The next step was to choose a “theme.” I didn’t have anything that I wanted to commit to, so I chose Team No Theme. I just wanted the room to be soft, timeless, and feminine. I wanted it to look like a baby lived there, not an adult hipster. I knew I wanted to incorporate florals, but I didn’t want to go too crazy. I also had the luxury of knowing we are moving sometime next year when Andrew’s residency ends, so her nursery didn’t have to transition into a little girl’s room. As long as we were living in this house, it only had to be a room for a tiny baby.


The process:

Decorating this nursery proved to be one of the hardest projects I’ve done. You only get to bring your first baby home once, and I wanted everything to be just the way I envisioned. That desire combined with pregnancy brain gave me decision paralysis like I have never had in my life. I am normally a VERY decisive person. But while putting together the nursery, I second-guessed everything. I literally lost nights of sleep over the curtains. I kept having to remind myself that all my baby actually needs is love, food, and a safe place to sleep, and I had those covered.

To somewhat preserve my sanity, I made a list and a Pinterest board of all the elements I wanted for the room. That helped me stay focused while shopping.



The sources:

I’m not a cool enough blogger to have an account where I can link all the sources for you, so I’ll list them here for those curious:

Crib: Buy Buy Baby

Dresser (used as changing table): Leah Shea Interiors in Paducah, KY

Blanket ladder: Facebook Marketplace

Paint color: Sachet by Valspar

Rocker: Target

Side table: Marshall’s

Cube storage & floral cubes: Walmart

Gallery wall: Frames are from Goodwill, Marshall’s, and At Home. Mirror and cross are from Hobby Lobby. The wooden sign is from Home Goods. The other pieces in her gallery wall are:

-“The Rose Fairy” print from this series by Cicely Mary Barker. She was an English artist in the 1920’s and 30’s, and I love her prints for nurseries or little girls’ rooms.

-Vintage sheet music for “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.” I’ve had this sheet music for years and I saved it knowing I would want it in a nursery someday.

-A vintage Barbie sketch print from a set of greeting cards like this one.

-The Art of Disney theme parks “Vision” postcard. I tried to link this but couldn’t find a source I trusted. This is a postcard I bought while I worked at Disney. It depicts the land on which Magic Kingdom is built as it looked when Walt purchased it, with a hologram of the castle over it.

That may be more detail than you ever wanted to know, but that’s the story on our little girl’s nursery! We can’t wait to bring her home!

Affordable Loungewear Looks

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I officially hit the 37 week mark yesterday! Our baby girl will be here before we know it and we can’t wait to meet her! I’ll be staying home with Lyla for at least the next year. One thing I’ve done as I look forward to becoming a SAHM is to seek out lounge-wear looks that are practical while still making me feel somewhat put together. I know motherhood involves a lot of bodily fluids and thinking of yourself last. I also know I don’t need to impress anyone or look like I’m going to a ball. However, I do think a simple, feasible act of self-care I can implement is to put on a clean outfit each day that I wouldn’t be embarrassed to answer the door in. With that in mind, I’ve put together this Pinterest board of affordable pieces as well as some inspo for how to wear things you might already have.

As I’m writing this, Aerie has all their joggers and leggings 40% off. If you happen upon this post after that sale is over, keep checking their site for future markdowns. My favorite brands for quality lounge-wear that lasts forever, looks cute, and keeps me comfy are Aerie and Victoria’s Secret. I personally would not spend full price, but both brands have frequent sales that put their items in a very reasonable price range. I literally have Victoria’s Secret sweatpants from 2009 that are still kicking. For other pieces like camis, cardigans, and basic tops, I always check Forever 21. Ideally, my lounge outfits would be something I could confidently run an errand in, but for the most part I’m just going to be wearing these outfits around the house, so I don’t want to spend a ton of money.

What are some simple things you do for self-care? Any stay at home moms out there with tips for a newbie? Let me know in the comments!

My Summer 2019 Faves

Processed with VSCO with m5 presetI have to admit, I’m ready for fall. I’m not usually one to rush through seasons, but fall is when the Cude household thrives. If we’re being realistic, we probably won’t be feeling fall weather here in Kentucky until at least October. Knowing that it will still feel like summer for a while, I’ve rounded up all the random items that have made my life more enjoyable this season. And that’s saying something, considering I’ve been pregnant all summer. Trust me, I’ve gotten pretty good at beating the heat!

Sonic Vanilla Coke with lime

Soda is one of my vices–so much so that when I got pregnant, I gave up all other caffeine just so I could still drink Coke. Add to that the fact that crushed ice has been one of my pregnancy cravings, and Sonic has been my best friend this summer. This flavor combo idea was suggested on their menu and let me tell you, it’s a game changer. It tastes like key lime pie in a cup.

Bath & Body Works Summer Boardwalk candle

The scent description lists “Caramel-Glazed Popcorn, Warm Taffy Apples, and Salty Sweet Cream.” Y’all. It smells so delicious. Andrew told me the first time I burned it that he wanted one for every room in the house because he wanted this scent to follow him everywhere he went. I love this candle for the end of summer because the caramel makes it a great transition to fall. I didn’t link it because it’s sold out online, but you can still find summer scents in stores.

Ocean Potion After Sun Aloe Lotion

I started using this lotion when I was in high school, back when I was actually outside for a good portion of the summer. I’ve used it every year since, and it wouldn’t feel like summer without it. It smells like a Dreamsicle, and it acts like an aloe gel after sun exposure. I also use it every time I get out of the shower. I used this for the majority of my pregnancy and I haven’t had any stretch marks. Part of that just depends on your skin type and part of that is because I am religious about putting on lotion every day. But I can definitely say this helped keep my skin from being dry and tight during pregnancy.

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Simple dresses

I’m here to tell you, fellow preggos, maternity pants are not your friend in the summer. And I haven’t found a pair of maternity shorts that are really comfortable. Enter the shift dress. I went to Marshall’s and bought several of these plain, stretchy dresses in varying lengths. I am not exaggerating when I tell you these are all I have worn in the last several weeks. They are so comfy and easy to throw on, and you still look put together. Time will tell how long I continue to rely on these after baby has arrived.

New lip colors

I typically simplify my makeup routine for summertime, and I’ve especially done that while pregnant. I bought this lip balm because I usually just swipe on some Chapstick, but I wanted a little color. This balm uses your skin’s ph to change to your perfect shade of pink. I was a little skeptical at first, but it really does work! I was also inspired by one of my Southern Living issues to try a coral lip color. On the days I do a full face of makeup, I’ve been doing a more gold/bronze look. Just trying to play up that pregnancy glow! I chose this one from Loreal because it has a subtle shimmer.

What have you been loving this summer? Are you ready for fall or are you sad when summer’s over? Let me know if you end up trying and liking anything on this list!

A Classic 4th of July + Trending Hair Accessories

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I’ve always loved the 4th of July. Every purchase I’ve ever made of red, white, or blue clothing has been partially justified by saying “Well, this could be my 4th of July outfit!” Don’t ask me where I got the notion that my 4th of July is going to consist of a week’s worth of appearances. I just can’t turn down anything with a classic, Americana style.

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I’ve been wearing my hair up most days this summer. Between being pregnant and the amount of rain we’ve had, I just can’t bring myself to put more than a few minutes into my hair each day. Luckily for me, this just so happens to be the summer of hair accessories. I got this hair wrap at Walmart and I’ve worn it so many different ways. Below I’ve linked some other affordable hair accessories. I always like to try out trend pieces, especially accessories, at places like Forever 21 and Walmart. Opting for a lower price point allows me to play with trends without wasting money I could have spent on more classic pieces.

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I’m also linking my Pinterest board for a classic 4th of July get-together. This year my mom and I are headed to Georgia to visit my grandma and I’m already excited about all the South Georgia watermelon we’re going to eat! What are your 4th of July plans? How do you feel about the hair accessory trend? Tell me in the comments!

Classic 4th of July Pinterest Board

Star barrettes

Bow ponytail holder

Marble hair clips

Leopard claw clip set

Floral head wrap

Goodwill Shopping Tips

If you’ve been around me for any time at all, you know I’m an avid Goodwill shopper. Half of my wardrobe is from Goodwill, and that’s not to mention all the home decor I’ve scored there. This week I’m coming in hot with every single thing I know about shopping at Goodwill. Over the years I’ve found so many good deals, and I finally have my tactics down to a science. Keep reading to learn how you can snag high-quality items at Goodwill prices!


Sale schedule:

Yes, even Goodwill has sales. Every week they choose a “color of the week,” and clothing items tagged in that color are marked 50% off. On Sundays, items marked that color are 99 cents. In my experience, those items get bought up very quickly. Sometimes it can feel like there’s nothing in the store that color. I think you’re better off to shop as you normally would and then tally your haul up at the end to see if you have any markdown tags. Let that help you make your final decisions. If you select items solely because they’re marked down, you’re more likely to buy something you won’t actually wear.


When to shop:

Given the sale schedule, Sundays are a great time to shop because you can get items for 99 cents. Spring and summer are the best seasons because everyone is spring cleaning and having yard sales. Every Saturday throughout that season, you will see vehicles lined up at the donation door dropping off whatever didn’t sell at their yard sales. You can often find great deals on furniture as a result.

What to shop for:

This is really the key to making Goodwill work for you, and it’s also the most subjective tip I have. What you look for depends entirely on what you will get the most use out of. For example, I used to look for work clothes at Goodwill and I consistently found items from The Limited, Talbots, LOFT, Ann Taylor, Gap, and Old Navy. In the future I will likely look for kid’s clothes since they are so cheap and kids constantly outgrow their clothes. Here are the categories I look for most consistently:

-Brand names: I honestly couldn’t care less about what brand I’m wearing, but I do care about quality. The whole point of Goodwill shopping is to score quality items for cheap. I wouldn’t waste time on items from Walmart or Forever 21, because those items are already so cheap it defeats the purpose. In addition to the brands I listed above, I’ve found Ralph Lauren, Calvin Klein, Tommy Hilfigher, and department store brands like Chaps when shopping for men’s clothing at Goodwill. I also frequently find items from local boutiques. Don’t buy something just because it’s a certain brand, but always be mindful of the quality.

-Vintage items: My Goodwill white whale is a vintage pair of Levi’s that I can wear high-waisted and cut off into shorts. I honestly started daydreaming just typing that. If you’re like me and have a more eclectic style, you can find some great vintage pieces at Goodwill. Now that the 90’s are back, I’ve found some super comfy 90’s midi/maxi dresses. I’ve even found vintage Lily Pulitzer dresses and then kicked myself later for not buying them. You can also find pretty vintage dishware. Look for brands like Pyrex as well as patterns and color schemes that go with your kitchen.

-Books: Goodwill books can serve so many different purposes. You can look for vintage books in a color scheme you want to decorate with, a la Joanna Gaines. You can look for hardback classics to build your home library. I’ve also gotten several paperbacks to take to my neighborhood pool. That way if when I get splashed, I’m not ruining a library book or a book I paid full price for. Goodwill is great for children’s books, too. I’ve already found some kids’ classics for our little one for 99 cents each.

-Leather goods: Leather can always be doctored up, and a little wear just gives it character. Digging through belts, shoes, and purses can yield some genuine leather treasures.

-Home decor: I have the most success finding vases and baskets at my local Goodwill, but some stores have a wide decor selection.

The most important thing to remember about shopping at Goodwill is that it’s going to require some digging. You can’t walk in looking for something specific and expect to find it. Approach it like a treasure hunt, and you just might find some treasure!

It’s also imperative not to fall into the trap of buying things just because they’re cheap. You’ll end up spending more than you save that way. Trust me, I speak from experience! Be super realistic about whether you will actually wear or use what you’re buying.

If you’ve read this far, you’ve now completed my course, Goodwill Shopping 101. Consider yourself a certified bargain hunter. If you score something great at Goodwill, post it and tag me on Instagram or Facebook!

Hobby Lobby Shopping Tips from a Former Employee

Did you know I used to have someone on the inside feeding me information? That’s right, my brother worked at every woman’s happy place: Hobby Lobby. Much to his chagrin, my mom and I would pry him for shopping tips. There are several things that make Hobby Lobby unique, one being that their store stays pretty consistent over the years. So even though it’s been a little while since he worked there, I recently sat down with my brother to get a refresher course.  Today I’m sharing the best way to score your most-wanted items and save money at everyone’s favorite place to accidentally spend two hours.

The Weekly Ad: Cue the angel chorus. Every savvy Hobby Lobby shopper knows that the Ad is everything. You should almost never have to pay full price for something at Hobby Lobby, and the Weekly Ad is your guide. Here’s how to use the ad to figure out when to shop:


  • The main categories that go on sale (50% off) alternate every other week. As a general rule, the same categories will be included on a bi-weekly basis. So, if a category goes 50% off and it’s not on sale, it will be on sale the following week.
  • The sales are grouped by what material the item is made of, so make sure that’s what you’re paying attention to. For example, glass decor may be on sale a different week that wood decor. The weekly ad will list the categories in detail. With this in mind, it is SO important to put your items back where they belong, as putting them in the wrong place can make it very difficult for other customers to determine what is on sale.
  • The custom framing department has sales in the weekly ad. This is a great thing to keep an eye on if you have a framing project, as custom frame jobs can get expensive.
  • Wedding items are marked 50% off every other week, so if you need wedding stuff, don’t pay full price. However, note that if an item doesn’t have the “His & Hers” logo, it’s not included in the wedding sale.


The 40% off coupon: Hobby Lobby always has a coupon available for 40% off one single item. You can cut the coupon out of a paper ad, print the coupon off their website and bring it in, or use your smartphone to pull up the coupon at the register. Here are the best ways to utilize your coupon:


  • Arts and Crafts items normally only go on sale for 30% off. If you need a single item from these categories, shop on a week they’re not on sale and use your coupon. If you need multiple items, it would be better to shop during the sale so that all items will be 30% off.
  • Fabric goes on sale by sub-category for a maximum 30% off. If you only need one item, it would be better to shop on a week fabric is not on sale and use your coupon for a better discount.
  • If you have any non-sale item in your transaction, you should use your coupon on it, no matter how small. 40% off a small-ticket item is still 40% off.
  • Note that the coupon is only good for non-sale items. Any item marked on sale can’t have the coupon applied. Picture frames and furniture are considered “always on sale,” so they are not eligible for the coupon.
  • The coupon can only be used once per person, per transaction. If you have multiple non-sale items, use the coupon on the highest-priced item.

Seasonal decor: How else would we mark the seasons if not for Hobby Lobby’s holiday decor section? From Valentine’s Day to Christmas (which they roll out in mid-summer), Hobby Lobby has enough decor to fill every square inch of your home. Be advised that seasonal sales are not the best in terms of savings. Most seasonal items are marked up because they will spend so long at a 50% markdown. Eventually, seasonal items will get marked down further. However, seasonal items do tend to get bought up quickly, so if there’s a particular piece you have your eye on, it may be best to go ahead and snag it at 50% off. If you’re on the fence about it, wait it out and see if you can score it at a better discount.


Items that never go on sale: There are two categories at Hobby Lobby that never go on sale: party items and greeting cards. You can use your 40% off coupon, but note that it is only good for one single item. If you need party supplies, consider ordering from somewhere that sells in larger quantities.

Avoid the crowds: The store tends to be fairly quite in the mornings before 11:00 am and on weekday evenings. If you’re interested in Christmas decor, make your selections during the fall. November-January is Hobby Lobby’s busiest time, so if you shop there during those months, expect a crowded store and a long wait at checkout.

Be patient: Remember, please be kind to employees regarding sales and coupons. Hobby Lobby is one of the few stores that doesn’t have a UPC (bar-code) system. This means employees don’t have the ability to just scan an item and have it ring up automatically on sale. Employees have to manually enter every item and check their sale ad to verify discounts. Combine that with the fact that many of the items purchased at Hobby Lobby are breakable and have to be wrapped, and you can expect to spend a few minutes in line. Knowing that going in can help you avoid frustration if you aren’t able to pop in and out of the store quickly.

Regarding returns, keep your receipt! Employees will have to verify the date of your purchase to confirm whether your item was on sale and therefore how much money you get back. Also, Hobby Lobby receipts do not print item numbers due to the lack of bar-codes. So the employee processing your return has to wade through each item by department and price. In short, Hobby Lobby is not the place to buy it all and just decide at home. If you need to fill a certain space, take measurements. If you need to match a certain color, bring swatches to compare. Save yourself as much time as you can by avoiding impulse buys, knowing the return process is not as simple as scanning a receipt.

There you have it, folks! Everything you could ever want to know about Hobby Lobby shopping! Was this post helpful for you? Are there other stores you’d like to see tips for? Let me know in the comments!


My Favorite Thrift Finds

I’ve always been drawn to things that had a life before me. I’d much rather search for something secondhand than go buy it brand new. Thrift shopping is like a treasure hunt. I love the feeling when you happen upon something that you know is a major score! Today, I’m sharing some of my favorite thrift shopping finds in hopes that they will inspire you to go on your own treasure hunt!

Tooled leather handbag



I quite literally dug this bag off the very back shelf of a junk shop in Paducah, KY-my hometown. It’s worn around the edges, but that just adds to the character! Tooled leather is often created by hand, so you may need to be willing to pay a little more for finds like this than other items.

Pink cowboy boots



These rare petal-pink Laredo boots are one of my favorite finds ever! These came from a junk shop in Bowling Green, KY. I went to school at WKU and my friends and I spent so many weekends out perusing all the amazing thrift stores Bowling Green has to offer. Anything that reminds me of something I used to have for my Barbie dolls makes me happy, and pink cowboy boots definitely fall into that category.


Wooden dresser

I technically can’t take credit for this find. My husband pulled this cutie out of our neighbor’s trash. (We are but humble rednecks, after all.) One of the drawers was broken, but with a little elbow grease from Andrew and a little paint from me, we converted it into our entertainment center. I found these knobs at Hobby Lobby and I based our living room on this color palette. You know what they say…one man’s trash is another man’s living room furniture.


Blue and white dishware

I decorated our kitchen in blue, white, and copper. Almost all of our decorative dishware has been thrifted or handed down by family. Keep in mind that if you’re looking for something specific while thrifting, you will likely have to collect it little by little. There are so many patterns of blue and white dishware, and your collection will look more cohesive if you choose a few similar styles. I tend to like floral motifs and scenic patterns, like Courier & Ives. There are also Oriental styles and fine china patterns. Remember that your colors won’t match exactly unless you find a whole set, but you can get very close!

Gap denim jacket (and other brand-name clothes)


This Gap denim jacket is just one of the brand-name staples I’ve found at Goodwill. The key to shopping smart at Goodwill (probably a whole separate post) is to only buy something if you know you’ll get lots of wear out of it. Otherwise, it’s not really a great find. I’ve found Gap, Old Navy, LOFT, and great vintage pieces by searching Goodwill.

I hope seeing some of the treasures in my thrifting trove has inspired you to get out there and find the potential in something secondhand. Let me know if you have any questions about anything I’ve mentioned! What are your favorite thrifting tips? Where do you have the best luck? Let me know in the comments!

The Best Books I Read in 2018

The Best Books I Read in 2018





What’s the first thing I do when I move to a new city? Sign up for a library card! We live right across the street from one of the library branches here in Lexington, which is kind of a dream come true for me. Seriously. I’ve always loved reading, and I love wandering through the aisles searching for a new book to get lost in. These are the best books I read last year! Reading is good for your brain, it teaches you so much, and for me personally, it helps calm my anxiety before bed. I hope this list will encourage you to get to your local library and discover some new reads!

The Complete Sherlock Holmes


I’ve loved mysteries since I was a third grader devouring Nancy Drew books. This year I realized I’d never read the Sherlock Holmes stories. So, in true Ashton fashion, I decided to read them all…in chronological order. I fell in love with these stories as so many thousands of readers have before me. The tales range from the strange to the macabre and everything in between. The real magic of these stories is, though, is in their warmth. Even though Sherlock works on problems that involve crime, there is something so comforting about his and Watson’s friendship. When I closed the page on the very last story, I felt sad that I was leaving the warm hearth of 221B Baker Street, and I know I’ll return to these stories for years to come.

Marilyn: The Passion and the Paradox


If you think you know Marilyn Monroe, think again. I first became interested in Marilyn when I watched a documentary about her in high school. This book dives deep into her background, her relationships, and the era in which she was living. She truly was a fascinating and, in many ways, tragic person who deserves to be remembered for her talent. If you’re interested in her at all, this book is definitely worth a read. It opened my eyes to the hardships she came from, the twisted world of the Hollywood studio system, and the undeniable “it” factor that Marilyn had in comparison to other actors. Also, before I read this book I didn’t believe any of the Kennedy conspiracy theories about her death. After reading it?? They totally did it.

The Art of Hearing Heartbeats


This story was so engrossing, and it was unlike anything I’ve read recently. The narrative unfolds little by little, eventually coming full circle to a poignant conclusion. A girl’s father goes missing and she tries to find him using the very little she knows about his background. I can’t really say much about the plot-line without giving away spoilers, but if you like suspense, reading about other places and cultures, or if you’re a sucker for a tragic love story, you’ll love this book.

And Then There Were None


I read several Agatha Christie novels this year, and I loved them all. This one takes the cake for suspense. Her stories always have a twist ending and I never saw this one coming. It is a true suspense-thriller masterpiece, and I love that such stories were written by a woman who was living in an era where women having their own career pursuits was far from commonplace. If you love mysteries or suspense, you have to read Agatha Christie. I promise you’ll be hooked.

There you have it! My hot takes on my favorite reads of 2018. What were your fave books this year? What’s on your reading list for 2019? Let me know in the comments!