Tea Talk Tuesday

It's been awhile since my last Tea Talk post (almost a year, OMG!) and so many things have changed. This year, I decided to embrace a word and a concept and I tried to let it guide me through the past months, if you remember my previous posts, the word is less.

I really wanted to find a balance between online life and "real" life (let's call it this way, despite I consider both to be real!), spending less time on social media consuming consuming consuming without creating anything, focusing more on my blog, and so on. It actually happened, in certain ways, but I wasn't prepared to find myself having to schedule blocks of time on Google Calendar to dedicate solely to my blog, because of my super busy life.

During Spring, I started a voluntary job at a library, with additional voluntary work as webmaster for a local association I joined; then, during Summer, I spent four weeks away from home at a couple of University archaeological excavations and, during that time, all my plans of being present online went away, since I didn't have any wifi connection nor physical time to catch up with blogs and social media on my phone. I came back home and I found myself super behind with everything, even with the rest of my university tasks and exams. This Fall, I realized it's hard doing it all and I won't probably be able to stick with my 2-posts-per-week schedule all the time, but it's okay, I have to prioritize some things in order to make some space for others, I just have to learn to live with it.

I have too many interests, too many passions (too many fandoms!), and it's hard for me let things go, I tried in the past, but it was too hard. I'll always be overbooked, and I must find a way to prioritize and organize my life, I feel like I'm on the right path now.

I'm going to create a static page with all my current projects soon (thank you, Thomas Frank for the inspiration!), but, in the meantime, I'm going to share them here for you, in case you lost track of my presence online.

Here is my list of current projects:

  • writing this blog. I try to publish every Tuesday and Thurday, but I'm often finding myself forced to downsize to only one post a week
  • writing for Middle-earth News and sharing Middle-earth events on social media
  • writing for Travelling Geek Show every other week (I'm working on this schedule frequency, promise!)
  • #bookstagram: sharing pictures of books, my cat, my fandoms on a daily basis on Instagram as @thegeekyburrow
  • #WednesdayWanderings: sharing my weekly adventures playing with one of my LOTRO alts on Tumblr (probably my most geeky project! Still not ready for Twitch, but who knows? :))
  • tweeting again as @alicegreenleaf. After a solid year of trying to market myself as @thegeekyburrow, I realized I couldn't maintain a niche profile and a personal one at the same time, so I've put this one on autopilot (thanks IFTTT!) and returned over @alicegreenleaf. Here I tweet about my various interests, so it's basically for those of you who want to follow me as a person and not just a specific topic or my blog (for that, stick with @thegeekyburrow, guys!).
  • sharing my productivity posts on Medium. This is a pretty new project, but during the last few months I've been lucky enough to beta test some new apps and write productivity posts and I wanted to gather them all together, but opening an additional blog wasn't an option for me (I don't have time!!), so I decided to use this platform to share them.
That's it! I think there are so many different topics here that I almost forgot to tell you I'm about to write my MA thesis and started my last year of classes at University (!). I really wanted to wrap my "quarter of a century" up summarizing my life right now (at 25), because in a couple of days I'll turn 26 and I'll probably have one of those not-feeling-an-adult crisis. :)

Speaking of October 27, keep an eye on this blog if you want to know more about a cool To-Do list app, because I'm going to have a guest post from a smart guy I met on the internet! (And I'm going to cross-post on his own blog as well!).

If you arrived at the end of this post, well, you're amazing and I hope you didn't think I'm crazy for doing all these things at the same time and you're going to follow me somwhere, if you like. THANK YOU, friends!

I Heart Instagram [Tag]

Two years ago around this time, I published this Tag about Instagram and I thought it might be fun to do it again after all this time, since so many things changed! At that time, I was sharing only personal photos with the @alicegreenleaf handle, which is what I still do now, more or less, with the difference that my primary account is @thegeekyburrow and I publish bookish and geeky photos there.

Here is the Q&A with myself. :)

What’s your Instagram handle? @thegeekyburrow

How many people do you follow? 281

How many followers do you have? 1.012 (still have to thank them all for the amazing support!)

What are your favorite hashtags? #bookstagram, #TolkienCollection, #HarryPotter

What is your favorite genre of pictures? I used to share my boring everyday life, but now I mostly publish photos of my books and my cat, I like having a sort of theme.

How often do you post? I try to post at least once a day, but sometimes I'm so busy that I might skip a couple of days.

How often do you check Instagram? Several times a day. It's the app I check more frequently. (This answer didn't change in two years!)

What’s your favorite filter? I don't use filters anymore, so I can share with you my favorite editing app: Afterlight. Sometimes I also use the new AColorStory app by A Beautiful Mess.

iPhone only, purist or rebel? Every camera works for me, even if it's my tablet one!

Three favorite IG accounts currently? @ziba.reads because her photos are amazing and they have an overall feeling of coziness that makes me whant to read every moment! Speaking of coziness, my other favorite it @sincerelysara22, I love her photos and she's one of my blogger friends. The last one is @superspacechick, I love Kristin's mix of geek&books, it's just my jam and, again, she's another fellow blogger! I must say, that I follow only the accounts I really want to see everyday in my feed, so I have 200+ favorites, actually!

Since this is a sort of revival, I tag everyone who wants to participate!

Do you like Instagram too?

I'm a Seasonal Reader

The other day, one of my favorite Tolkien collectors on Instagram, @collecttolkien, asked his followers: "Are there seasons when you like to read certain books?". My reply to his question made me realize I'm a seasonal reader, meaning that my reading interests vary according to the seasons.

Not sure why, but I like to read The Hobbit during Spring or Fall, LOTR during Winter and The Silmarillion during Summer!

It probably has something to do with my beloved childhood memories and my deep love for Tolkien. For example, I like to read The Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter during Winter, because those amazing movies were released around Christmas when I was younger (despite the last Harry Potter movies that came out during Summer, very unappropriate to me!), it makes me remember those magic days waiting for meeting my favorite characters again and looking for nice interviews or photos in all the magazines I spotted around. I've been able to live that atmosphere again with The Hobbit trilogy and I couldn't be more grateful for that! I'm still hoping to love Fantastic Beasts as much as I can to have something to look foward to every Fall/Winter for the next few years. Speaking of which, I'm happy that JK Rowling announced that there will be not 3, but 5 movies in the franchising!

I like to read The Hobbit during Spring, because the story starts during that season and I love following Bilbo's journey looking at the calendar, even if Tolkien added less dates than in The Lord of the Rings.

Summer is definitely for crime/mystery/thriller books, it's a tradition of mine since I discovered Agatha Christie when I was a child and I spent a week every year at my grandparents, my granny owned a big collection of those books and I think that's one of the reasons why I love this author so much. Those three months also remember me of my childhood vacations at the beach with my parents, it was my mom and I's tradition to buy a new book the first day of our vacation and I usually ended up buying a crime book. Not sure why, another book I like to read during Summer is The Silmarillion, Elves makes me think about those beautiful sunny days I was able to enjoy when I was younger and the weather was still normal (not the Mordor climate you'll find now).

Finally, I like to read non-fiction during Fall and Winter, because it's when I'm more focused and I actually want to improve myself and my productivity.

Follow me on Instagram (@thegeekyburrow) for more photos!

Are you seasonal readers too? What kind of books do you like to read during Fall? I'd love to chat with you!

Project Life | September Pages + A Little Catch Up!

Happy October, friends! I couldn't be more excited for this month and this season, because it's truly my favorite time of the year (just after Christmas). I'm happy that Summer is finally behind us, I ended September with two other weeks away from home to work at another university excavation (I'm an archaeologist FYI) and this time went way better than my last experience in August, but I had this constant feeling of missing out. I was so busy being social that my only moment of the day to check out my emails was at the restaurant when we were waiting for our dinner. Then I came back home and I had 1 million of things to do, like catching up with university and reorganizing the mess of luggages and laundry at home, it's been crazy! I don't even know how I managed to join a couple of bookstagram challenges...(thanks to the beloved Later app, honestly.)

I'm happy to be back to my regular routine now and I'm excited for my last year of classes at university, I really want to be more present here on the blog in the future. I'm not going to do any bookish update though, because during the month of September I only managed to read few pages from Happier at Home and nothing more, ugh! My actual goal was to finish that book and read something else, but life happens.

Clearly, travelling with this frequency is not for me. I'm a homebody and I like to have control over my days, plan my tasks and activities and, most importantly, be able to have some me-time on a daily basis. This super social Summer has been exhausting and now I can't wait to curl up with a cup of tea diving into my Fall TBR...ALONE.

Speaking of which, I was so close to buy Harry Potter and the Cursed Child at a local book store the other day, when I realized that purchasing it on Amazon would make me save 3.50€, so I'm going to place my order very soon! I miss buying physical books at physical stores, but if it helps me save some money...

To wrap this up, here are some Project Life pages from September. I know, week 38 is missing, but it's made with a bunch of personal photos with my university mates, so, for privacy reasons, I'm just sharing my boring everyday life. :)

You can find all my 2016 Project Life pages on Pinterest.

Let's catch up! How was your September, friends?

All the Books I Own and Haven't Read Yet

Last week I shared with you my Fall TBR list, this week instead I'd like to share with you all the other books I already own and haven't read yet. Since I have a very small bedroom and many many books for university, I don't have access to a good library, plus I'm a broke student, I decided to invest in a Kindle four years ago. Since then, I've been able to read much more books than before and save money, since ebooks are way cheaper than paper books. I have a big Amazon Wishlist with all the titles I'm interested to read and I keep an eye on it almost everyday to see if there is anything on sale.

All the following books have been purchased for less than 3 Euros, I like hoarding good deals, haha. :)

1. Better Than Before: Mastering the Habits of Our Everyday Lives by Gretchen Rubin
2. Landline by Rainbow Rowell
3. Carry On by Rainbow Rowell
4. The Wrath & the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh
5. The Winner's Curse by Marie Rutkoski
6. Irish Fairy and Folk Tales by W.B. Yeats
7. The Girl Who Came Home by Hazel Gaynor
8. Mary Poppins by P.L. Travers
9. Library of the Dead by Glenn Cooper

I'm not sure how I dicovered every single book in this list, but I read several book blogs at the moment and I follow some BookTube channels now, so here is mostly how I discover new books. The books by Rainbow Rowell were an impulse-buy after reading Fangirl, since I loved that book! While Mary Poppins was added to my list after watching the movie Saving Mr. Banks, I had no idea that that story was born as a book first!

Are you books hoarder too? Are your TBR piles/lists huge? :)