Happening Now

We are getting into January, but 2016 still feels fresh and new. I think it is going to be a good one. Here are a few things that I'm doing/loving/obsessing over right now. 

 An ideal Saturday

An ideal Saturday

Outlander

I am obsessed. I feel a weird obligation to tell the entire world about this book because of a long story that involves me receiving it as a gift and resenting it, carrying it on international travels and not reading it for many years. But I finally did and it was incredible. For a short plot synopsis: a nurse in 1945 is transported to 1743 through magic stones in the Scottish highlands. Danger, political intrigue, and romance ensue. I was worried that it would be too much of a romance novel for me (which is why I dismissed it all those years ago), but it definitely isn't and the book doesn't revolve around will they or won't they get together. I finally read the book because of how much I enjoyed the show (which you should also watch). The plot of the show and the plot of the first book are very similar, but I was super into it and on the edge of my seat, even though I knew what was going to happen, which I think says a lot about the writing. Reading Outlander reminded me to reading as a kid - I was completely immersed in the story. I highly recommend it (although this book may not be for everyone - there are aspects to the story that may be upsetting or triggering regarding torture/sexual assault, so please be aware if that is something of concern for you). I have requested the next book in the series from the library and the wait is killing me.

Sketchbook

After posting artwork to my Instagram account daily in 2015, I am keeping up the daily art habit, but I haven't been posting artwork to Instagram every day. The first day that I "missed" posting was a little bit scary and weird, but I am loving it right now! I am working on pieces more slowly and taking more time sketching, inking, then coloring than I would when I was trying to get something "finished" and ready for Instagram (not that everything I posted in 2015 was so beautiful and Insta-worthy). I'm happy to be making things just for fun that I'm not worried about sharing and to be working in a big sketchbook after working on a lot of 4x6 pieces of watercolor paper during my December Drawing Giveaway. Sharing drawings daily online did a ton of awesome things for me, so I definitely still recommend it - I think the lesson here is that switching things up is always inspiring and good for you.

 The kind of quality stuff you'll see on my Snapchat

The kind of quality stuff you'll see on my Snapchat

Snapchat

Even though I just said that I am enjoying a break from sharing my drawings on Instagram every day, I still feel the urge to share what I'm working on. I've been doing that on Snapchat lately. I don't worry about the photos looking as polished as I do on Instagram (clearly, I don't worry about Snapchat photos looking polished at all). I like sharing process shots that show how artwork is progressing as I work on it (again, working slowly in multi-step processes) and sharing other random things that I'm doing throughout the day. I also love to check out other people's stories! If you want to see inside the aforementioned sketchbook, connect with me on Snapchat @haleyca - I'd love to see what you get up to as well!

Small Routines

In keeping with my last post, I've made a bunch of small routine changes around here that are making me very happy! After using a gift card to buy a blender I've started making smoothies to take with me to work (even sneaking some green vegetables in there). I've also been doing some small things at nighttime, like listening to a calm playlist while I get ready for bed and reading before going to sleep instead of watching TV. I feel much calmer and more relaxed before bed and I haven't been waking up during the night as much since I made these tiny changes. As I've said a million times, small things make such a huge difference when done every day. 

What are you really into lately? Do you have any books that you're obsessed with? I can add them to my list for when I'm done with the Outlander series (7 books from now...)