Tag Archives: hobby

Turning Your Art Hobby Into A Side Hustle

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Turning Your Art Hobby Into A Side Hustle

So you’re looking for a side hustle, and you love art. Or, perhaps, you need to find ways to inject more creativity into your life while also bringing in some money. If either of those statements rings true, then maybe an arts and crafts side hustle could give you the creative outlet you’re looking for while also helping you create a financial plan for the future. Here are five ways that you can turn your passion into a cash cow side hustle:

Create And Sell Digital Art:

This is one of the most straightforward arts and crafts side hustles to start. You don’t need to buy any fancy equipment to create digital art, and you can sell it online to clients from anywhere in the world. In fact, there are tons of digital art marketplaces out there, including Etsy, Zazzle, and Society6. You can also take your digital art a step further by creating video tutorials that show your clients how they can use their new products. This not only allows you to get some extra content out there but also gives your clients added value.

Turn Your Art Into Home Decor:

If you create more traditional art, you can still sell it to customers as home decor. Frame Your Art allows you to list your art pieces for sale online and each frame comes with a free print of your art. You can also partner with local shops that sell home decor to display your framed art in their stores or sell your art on Amazon through the Merch by Amazon program. The catch is that you’ll have to print it yourself (or outsource it to a company), box it, and ship it out to customers. But if you have the time, this is a great way to instantly create passive income from your art.

If you make art yourself, stock up on supplies from King’s printmaking supplies and get to creating. It’s an easy way to turn your hobby into a side hustle.

Start An Etsy Store:

Art is a great way to keep yourself busy. It can also make you money and Etsy has become a go-to marketplace for handmade goods. There are plenty of ways for artists to sell their artwork and crafts to the public. However, if you want to start an Etsy store as a side hustle, make sure that you’re abiding by the company’s guidelines.

If you’re a creative person, chances are you have plenty of ideas for new products to sell. You can either create your own designs or source items from other designers. No matter what, you’ll need to make sure that your product is high quality. People tend to be very selective when purchasing handmade items. Take the time to do things right so you don’t have to worry about returns or poor reviews on your page.

Create Handmade Jewelry:

If you love to make jewelry but don’t want to sell your creations online, you can still make money with them as a side hustle. You can turn your jewelry-making hobby into a profit-making business by hosting small craft fairs in your neighborhood. Just make sure that you have permission to sell goods on public property.

In addition to craft fairs, you can also sell your goods online through marketplaces like Etsy, Amazon Handmade, and ArtFire. Keep in mind that this side hustle is more than just creating jewelry. You’ll need to set up your booth or display, attend events, and promote your business. You can also sell your jewelry at local shops. This allows you to get more visibility for your products, and you may even be able to negotiate a percentage of the sales.

Open A Print Shop:

Are you a Photoshop pro? If so, you can use your skills to create all sorts of designs for clients. Many companies outsource their printing to individuals who have the necessary software and knowledge to create the perfect design. You can find these jobs on sites like Upwork and PeoplePerHour.

There are also online print shops that allow you to design customizable products such as T-shirts, posters, tote bags, and more. First, you’ll need to create a shop through the website and upload your designs. You usually have the option to use a template or you can upload your own designs. Once you have the shop up and running, all you have to do is wait for customers to order your products.

If you have a passion for arts and crafts and are looking for some extra cash, a side hustle will be just right for you. How cool will it be to see other people enjoying your one of a kind pieces?!

Featured Image By: Jess Bailey Designs via Pexels

Lil Red’s Book Club: Secret Admirer By Patricia MacDonald Edition

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Lil Red’s Book Club: Secret Admirer By Patricia MacDonald Edition

Hello everyone and welcome to a brand new edition of Lil Red’s Book Club! It has been a while since our last book club post because Johnny and I have been so busy with the move. It took me way longer than usual to finish Secret Admirer by Patricia MacDonald but I’m ready to discuss it today – without giving any spoilers away, of course! Before we begin, I will be putting a trigger warning on Secret Admirer for general violence and disturbing content. Now, let’s get to it:

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Laura and her husband, Jimmy, have it all. A beautiful son named Michael, a successful art gallery, and a loving relationship ready to last a lifetime. Unfortunately, their plans for a prosperous life together are cut short on New Year’s Eve when tragedy strikes – Jimmy has been murdered in his own bed by a supposed burglar. Laura was left with superficial wounds and Michael was unharmed but the trauma of such a great loss has turned their world upside down… Especially because everyone thinks that Laura committed the murder.

Laura claims that a figure dressed in all black attacked her and her husband but no such person has been found. It also is suspicious to law enforcement and everyone in the tight knit community that Laura was essentially left unharmed. Granted, she also makes herself seem even more suspect when she begins a whirlwind romance with Ian Turner and gets married to him almost immediately. Were they the ones plotting Jimmy’s death all along?

As Jimmy’s case grows cold and Laura and Ian seeming more and more likely to have been the perpetrators, new information needs to surface and quickly. Unfortunately, the new lead does nothing to help the new couple. In fact, it’s even more damning because whomever killed Jimmy could have been a contract killer. Will Laura spend the rest of her life behind bars? And, if she didn’t have a part to play in her husband’s death, then who did? Read Secret Admirer to find out!

Overall, I thought that Secret Admirer was pretty good. However, it was a slow boil of a read with things only getting really interesting about a half of the way through. While I did like that I didn’t figure out the main plot twist, it didn’t blow me away by any means and I would have preferred if the book ended differently. Not bad, but definitely not my favorite.

Secret Admirer boasted a long list of characters, but I didn’t particularly care for any of them. I did like Laura and Jimmy’s friend, Gary, a lot but that was about it. Of course, I was rooting for Laura and her family to come out on top but, like the book itself, they weren’t my favorite characters that I have read about.

I am going to rate Secret Admirer with a five out of ten stars. An average rating for an average book. I’m glad that I finally finished it but I think it’s one that you can all skip on.

What are you currently reading? What should I read next? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Musical Instruments You Can Learn As An Adult Beginner

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Musical Instruments You Can Learn As An Adult Beginner

Many adults have wanted to be famous musicians at some point in their childhood, fantasizing about selling out concert halls and filling stadiums worldwide. However, not everyone was privileged enough to take music lessons as a child, and many may not be practicing anymore. According to Statista data, just 10.10% of Americans aged 18 to 29 revealed that they had played musical instruments in the last twelve months as of 2018. You can revive your passion for music by learning to play an instrument. Here are the best and easiest instruments to learn as a mature beginner:

Harmonica:

The harmonica is an instrument that many people rarely think about. However, it may surprise you to learn that it is the best selling musical instrument globally. This instrument is quite portable, affordable, and easy to learn, making it excellent for beginners. There is no way to sound bad when playing the harmonica since all the notes you play will be in key. It is never too late to learn how to play the harmonica since you can absorb its core concepts in just a few hours. Anyone can play the harmonica, but you will particularly enjoy learning it if you are a fan of folk, blues, and country music.

Piano:

It is estimated that 21 million Americans play the piano, making it one of the most popular musical instruments. The piano is quite versatile, allowing you to play songs in various styles. This classic instrument will boost your coordination since it forces you to play different melodies with both hands. Although this sounds difficult, many experts say that you shouldn’t have much of a problem mastering it if you can type on a computer keyboard.

You will likely find a few piano teachers in your area, given its widespread popularity. However, the internet is an excellent repository of tutorials and video lessons that you can rely on to practice your piano skills if you lack the budget or time for in person lessons, so keep this in mind. You can download music notes here to start practicing and follow in the footsteps of all time greats like David Bowie, Thelonious Monk, and Prince, who were self taught.

Ukulele:

You will undoubtedly see the ukulele in any list of the easiest musical instruments for beginners to learn. It has gained popularity in recent times because it is more straightforward to learn than the guitar. The ukulele has only four strings compared to the guitar’s six, so chords are easier to memorize. It is also smaller than a guitar with a thinner neck, so it is ideal if you have tiny hands. This instrument has a distinct, cheerful sound that can make any song sound fantastic, and many people grasp the basic chords in a few weeks. Also, it is more affordable than a guitar and mastering it puts you in a perfect position to play more difficult songs and even advance to complex string instruments like the violin.

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^^^ Pixabay Image

If you are looking for a new and rewarding hobby, then learning how to play an instrument is the way to go. Remember, all of the greats started out as beginners too!

Featured Image By: Pixabay

 

 

 

 

 

What’s In My Skate Bag?

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What’s In My Skate Bag?

Hello!! As most of you know, I am an avid ice skater and love hitting the rink as often as I can for a lesson with my childhood coach. When I was younger, I can remember how all of the skaters at the rink had the coolest skate bags on wheels to tote their belongings back and forth. Myself, on the other hand, opted for a Betsey Johnson travel bag and I have been using it for close to two decades… Until now, that is!

I had been long overdue for a much needed upgrade and Elite Sports delivered with this gorgeous new sports bag. What do I keep inside it? Let’s find out:

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^^^ You can shop my new bag in a variety of colors here!

My Practice Necessities:

  • Skates (Of course!)
  • A rag to dry my skates after practice
  • Hard guards for walking off ice
  • My favorite travel mug
  • A snack to eat on the way to the rink

When I go skating, it is typically after work because I hate getting up for early Saturday morning sessions. This means that I need to have a good snack and my travel mug handy to keep my energy up because I’ll have a late dinner afterwards. My “Making A Difference” mug was a surprise gift from the Ohio Department Of Developmental Disabilities and I take it everywhere. It works like a dream and I never have to worry about my hot drinks cooling down or cool drinks warming up lol.

My go to snack on the way to skating are the Belvita breakfast bars. I freaking LOVE these things and I’ll often have one before going to work too. My favorite are the soft baked bars – especially the ones with dark chocolate in it – YUM! It almost makes me feel guilty eating them because they taste like dessert but they provide me with the boost I need for a great skate.

As I mentioned before, it took me the better part of almost twenty years since I upgraded my skate bag and my wipe down rag still hasn’t changed. What can I say, I am a woman of habit! I got what was once a nice towel from the Skater’s Edge (A skate shop in Ohio) from a competition forever ago and it hasn’t left my possession since. Call it nostalgia or whatever you will for holding onto something for so long but it still wipes my skates dry all the same. 😀

Like a majority of the necessities in my skate bag, my hard guards were bought when I got my first pair of skates lol. Hey, if it’s not broken… These are a must have for skaters to protect their blades for pre and post practice as well as all of those bathroom breaks from guzzling water throughout the session!

And, finally, I don’t get to use my new(ish) skates as often as I would like, especially with the craziness of just moving apartments. However, when I do get the chance to get back on the ice, it’s like I never left. I can’t wait for my next practice to break out my new Elite Sports bag! 😀

How long do you tend to hold onto things for? What is in your work out bag? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Accessory Story: Handmade Necklaces Edition

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Accessory Story: Handmade Necklaces Edition

Hello! A couple of weeks ago, my niece made my mom and dad the cutest necklaces with Blues Clues pendants on them. I’m not going to lie, Johnny and I were pretty jealous that we didn’t get one too. So, the next time we watched her we asked if she could make us some necklaces and she said yes! They are absolutely adorable and my mind is blown by how much necklace making technology has improved for children. Check it out:

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I loved making necklaces when I was little… Until it was time to tie the string together, that is. Without fail, my necklace would end up falling apart and always resulted in frustration. I had to share the necklaces my niece made because 1) How could I not? and 2) The rubbery necklace strand is literally fail proof.

When my niece gifted my parents with their new bling, my dad’s came off and it happened in slow motion when it fell to the floor. I was positive that the beads would be flying off and tears would start to fall. But that wasn’t the case! The end of the necklace strand has two thick posts with one being hollow to attach the sides together. This change in width catches the beads every time for hours of jewelry making fun without the possibility of a masterpiece being ruined.

The amount of options for toys, clothes, TV shows, and everything in between has grown exponentially since I was a kid. These necklace strands are definitely one thing that I wish had been invented in my youth! I can’t wait to rock my new Blues Clues necklace and this improvement to jewelry making will be a fun activity for your little ones come summer break. 🙂

What was your favorite activity as a child? How about your favorite childhood TV show? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Lil Red’s Book Club: Behind The Red Door By Megan Collins Edition

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Lil Red’s Book Club: Behind The Red Door By Megan Collins Edition

Hello everyone and welcome to a brand new edition of Lil Red’s Book Club! Today, we are going to be discussing a thriller by Megan Collins called Behind The Red Door – without giving any spoilers away, of course. This is the third book in a row that I have read by Collins and it was pretty good. However, I definitely didn’t like it as much as The Family Plot or The Winter Sister.

Before we begin our discussion, I will be placing a trigger warning on Behind The Red Door for general violence and disturbing content. Now, let’s get to it:

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Fern has lived a life in which her anxiety will always define her. Her childhood was a lonely and… unique one, which puts in really nicely! Her mother is an artist who would immerse herself in her studio and would stay there for days on end. Her father studies the psychology behind fear and Fern was his subject during a majority of his “experiments”.

During these experiments, Fern’s dad would leave her in unfamiliar places or alone all night and then interview her afterwards to learn about what scared her. She was more of a test subject than a daughter and her whole childhood was spent longing for attention from her parents. Needless to say, this deeply effected her adult life and at thirty-two, she has profound anxiety, reoccurring nightmares, and is constantly scratching at her wrists.

Fern has spent a majority of her adult life avoiding her parents and hometown but she agrees to return to help her dad pack for his upcoming move. The night before Fern leaves, she is settled in front of the TV with her husband watching the evening news. The main headline is a shocking one about a woman who has gone missing named Astrid.

After seeing her picture, Fern can’t shake the feeling that she knows Astrid from somewhere. Her husband isn’t surprised because Astrid made the news twenty years prior for being kidnapped for a month and then returned close to Fern’s hometown. What he doesn’t know, though, is that Astrid’s face has haunted Fern’s nightmares for as long as she can remember.

Fern takes the opportunity of helping her dad pack to try and find the missing woman herself. Twenty years ago, Astrid disappeared without a trace but her newly released memoir reveals that there was a witness. Is Fern the witness that never came forward? And, if so, why can’t she remember meeting Astrid at all? Read Behind The Red Door to find out!

After a couple chapters in of Behind The Red Door, I thought that it wasn’t Collins’ best work. In her other two novels, the characters had their faults but they were, for the most part, very likeable. I felt connections to the people that I was reading about and that just wasn’t the case with Behind The Red Door.

Fern’s father was a nightmare and Fern, herself, wasn’t my favorite leading lady. From the start of this book, you can tell that her anxiety is absolutely crippling and understandably so. However, I was hoping for moments of her strength to shine through and this never happened. About halfway through, I admit that I stopped rooting for her because her character development was so minimal.

As far as the story line goes, it was fine. Now, I know that the books that I like to read have far fetched plots but this one was way too impossible for my liking. This also made it difficult to care for any of the characters because everything about Behind The Red Door was just so unlikely. I will say that the grand reveal was good and I didn’t figure it out, which is always a plus.

Overall, I am going to rate Behind The Red Door with a five out of ten stars. A writer’s work can’t all be winners and this book was a prime example of that. I wouldn’t recommend reading this one but do give The Family Plot or The Winter Sister a try because they were excellent.

What are you currently reading? What should I read next? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

 

Dinner Time!

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Dinner Time!

Hello! Something that brings me great joy is cooking and I love making delicious meals for Johnny and our friends and family. This past week, my sister and niece joined us for dinner and it was an absolute delight. I texted her a list of options that I could make and she chose lemon pasta. I was excited because I have had that saved on my Pinterest for forever and really wanted to make it!

I prepared the pasta dish with garlic bread and salad and it was a raging success. I also made air fried Oreos for dessert. These pictures are actually of leftovers because I was so hungry I forgot to snap some pics when it was fresh lol:

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You can view the entire recipe for lemon pasta at Contentedness Cooking!

The lemon pasta was an ultra easy and super tasty dish that I most definitely plan on making again. It is nice and light and will make for a perfect meal on a warm spring or summer day. It also tasted great leftover too and was even more lemony after it had time to sit.

When cooking a new recipe, I tend to follow it pretty closely. Then, I add my own variations if I like it enough to make again. The only thing I did differently when making the lemon pasta was use way more garlic than what was called for because we all know that three cloves is simply not enough! The taste of this dish was so yummy but we all agreed that it could use something extra. The next time I make it, I plan on adding the following:

  • Feta cheese
  • Cherry tomatoes
  • Spinach
  • Fresh parsley
  • Pine nuts

Any type of pasta is my favorite food and this recipe is one that will be enjoyed by anyone who shares my sentiments. It is really good as is but if the recipe looks a little too bland for you, adding extra veggies or herbs will help to kick things up a notch (In the eternal words of Emeril Lagasse)!

Have you tried any new recipes lately? How did they turn out? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

 

Summer Activities Perfect For Animal Lovers

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Summer Activities Perfect For Animal Lovers

When the weather gets warm, it is the perfect opportunity to try something new! If you are an animal lover and ready for some fun activities to get you outside, try some of these:

Start with Horse Riding:

It’s hard to find someone who doesn’t love horses. Their size makes them intimidating, but they are among the most gentle creatures. Almost any animal lover would enjoy being around horses, and riding them is one of the most leisurely hobbies you can do. You don’t need to become a bet on Kentucky Derby 2022 by fast riding! You can enjoy the company of a horse in many ways. You can gently ride horses on rural trails or help at the stables until you are confident enough to begin riding. Many stables welcome new visitors with a genuine interest.

How About Some Baby Feeding?

It’s spring, and you know what that means. Baby animals! Is there anything cuter than a newborn lamb or a slowly emerging hedgehog? While you might be hard pushed to find a lamb out near your city center apartment, you can see them if you volunteer. With so many new baby animals in spring, it’s a hectic time for people involved in animal welfare. From farmers to dog and cat charities, they all need your help. No charity will turn down free support if you are passionate about animals.

Bird Watching:

Bird watching is a trendy hobby. In the UK alone, over 3 million people per year spend their spare time with binoculars in hand, waiting to catch a glimpse of their favorite species of winged creatures. And the great news is that it is a very cheap hobby to pursue. All you really need is something to watch with, which you can get second-hand, and time. This makes bird watching the perfect hobby to start as the summer holidays approach and you might have more time off work or school.

Make Better Use of Your Phone with Pet Photography:

Smartphone cameras are excellent these days. Newer models, like Google’s phones, are even comparable to expensive DSLR cameras. In short, you can take professional looking photos with your phone camera. However, you will need to learn photographic principles first. But when you get good at it, you can take pictures of your pets, your friend’s pets, and even strangers. If you are good enough, the word might get around, and you could make some extra money. Everyone wants the perfect pics of their furry friends for their Insta account, right?

BONUS: Animal Hobbies that Can Make Money:

Pet photography is a great idea that will get you close to animals and make some money on the side. But it’s not the only one. Here are some animal hobbies that can make you some money:

  • Dog walking requires no training.
  • Grooming requires some training.
  • Pet transportation requires only a driving license.
  • Homemade pet accessories are great if you are crafty.
  • Blogging about animals can turn into a great online business.

Some of these hobbies are skill-dependent, but you can make extra money with any. Dog walking, for instance, requires no formal training. Just an affinity for dogs and super strong legs.

Beekeeping:

If you love insects, then beekeeping is a great way to study and learn about nature’s greatest allies. In addition, you get to keep the honey and you could even sell it for a profit. Just be aware that you will get stung. A lot. But once you become proficient at beekeeping, you can make a career out of it later. And your contribution will make a difference to the dying bee population.

Take a Dip in the Ocean:

You might be more interested in what lies beneath the ocean surface. If you love fish and marine life, summer is a great time to get into water related animal hobbies like snorkeling. The underwater world is quite spectacular and different from what you experience on dry land. Snorkeling could also lead to a developed recreation like deep-sea diving, where you can see amazing things and make it a career. You can make this hobby into a job by diving for treasure, documenting sea life, monitoring marine activity, or selling videos and photos.

Gardening:

Gardening has a massive impact on the animal world. The way you garden and landscape can either destroy habitats or improve them. You can make your garden a veritable paradise for local animals with proper landscaping methods. For example, suppose you live near a wooded area. In that case, you can encourage animals like rabbits, foxes, and deer onto your land by providing what they typically seek out. Create a wildlife window at home and watch as animals roam your property.

Consider Building a Farm Yard:

Of course, the ultimate hobby for animal lovers is to keep farmyard animals and livestock. However, you will need the land to do this. For instance, chickens alone need ten square feet each to be healthy. You can’t expect them to stay in the coop all day. If you are lucky enough to have land available, this is a rewarding hobby. You will get to look after animals every day and help raise their young. You significantly reduce our dependence on external food sources, lower your carbon footprint, and make your home more sustainable.

Animals and a love of the outdoors typically go hand in hand. Try one of these hobbies and enjoy yourself this summer!

Featured Image By: Pixabay

Lil Red’s Book Club: The Family Plot By Megan Collins Edition

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Lil Red’s Book Club: The Family Plot By Megan Collins Edition

Hello everyone and welcome to a brand new edition of Lil Red’s Book Club! Today, we are going to be discussing a thriller called The Family Plot by Megan Collins – without giving any spoilers away, of course! The last book I read was by Collins and I was so impressed by her that I just had to read more of her work. I am so glad I did because The Family Plot is, easily, one of my new favorites. It was EXCELLENT.

Before we begin the review, I will be placing a trigger warning on The Family Plot for disturbing content dealing with murder. Now, let’s get to it:

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Saying that Dahlia Lighthouse didn’t have a normal childhood is a severe understatement. She grew up in seclusion with her parents, twin brother Andy, and older siblings Charlie and Tate in a home that the locals refer to as “Murder Mansion”. The children were all home schooled but their curriculum was far from learning math and science. Rather, it revolved around their mom teaching all of them about murder and serial killings. And, yes, all of their namesakes are after murder victims.

Mother Lighthouse lost her parents in a grisly murder and the island that Murder Mansion is on has their own serial killer, the Blackburn Killer, who has never been caught. To protect her children from the evils of the outside world, she taught all of them about the worst possible things that could happen. It was her skewed idea of keeping them safe, but did it really?

As soon as Tate and Charlie became of age, they left the island without looking back. Dahlia had similar plans with her twin brother but on their sixteenth birthday, Andy disappeared and was never seen again. The loss of Andy is a gaping wound for Dahlia and she hasn’t seen or talked to her family since she moved to the mainland.

Unfortunately, Dahlia’s plans to never return to Murder Mansion were cut short when her father died unexpectedly. It’s bad enough that she has to be thrust back into her childhood home, which is a shrine to all things murder but that will not be the worst of it. In the family plot on their property, a body in the grave that has been dug for her father is discovered and puts her family at the center of an investigation.

Everyone in Dahlia’s family is a suspect for the murder of this unknown person on their property. The police even think that one of the Lighthouses might be the Blackburn Killer and Dahlia does too. As their investigation begins, Dahlia starts one of her own and the secrets that begin to spring forth confirms her feelings that she never knew her own family at all. Who is the Blackburn Killer? Read The Family Plot to find out!

As soon as I started reading The Family Plot, I was one hundred million percent in and I was genuinely upset when it was over. As you all know, Johnny and I are huge true crime buffs ourselves, so a family who lives their lives ensconced in murder was an interesting prospect. From Dahlia’s childhood to a broken family and a serial killer still at large, everything about The Family Plot kept me turning the pages until there were none left.

Every story line in this book blended together effortlessly and the grand reveals left me SHOOK. I was so engrossed in The Family Plot that I didn’t even try to figure things out for myself. Rather, I let it ride. While there were some things I pieced together on my own, I didn’t see most of the twists coming at all and there were so many instances when my jaw dropped to the floor.

The fascinating plot was held together by a formidable team of characters and I enjoyed reading about all of them. I loved brave and determined Dahlia, her true crime junkie friend, and the Lighthouse family groundskeeper named Fritz. However, it was older brother Charlie that stole the show. Charlie hides his trauma through alcohol, sarcasm, and living his life as a performance. He was absolutely hilarious and he had countless one liners that made me laugh out loud.

If you are looking for a fast paced read, a highly unique plot, and a good old fashioned whodoneit, then I can’t recommend The Family Plot enough. I am going to rate it with the coveted ten out of ten stars and I would happily read it again. Megan Collins knocked it out of the park yet again and I am itching to read more by her!

What are you currently reading? What should I read next? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

PS: Be sure to tune in tomorrow for blooper shots from my Spring Skirt Savvy OOTD! 😀

Lil Red’s Book Club: The Winter Sister By Megan Collins Edition

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Lil Red’s Book Club: The Winter Sister By Megan Collins Edition

Hello everyone and welcome to a brand new edition of Lil Red’s Book Club! Today, we will be discussing a thriller called The Winter Sister by Megan Collins – without giving any spoilers away, of course. This is the first book that I have read by Collins and I was so impressed by it that the next book I read will be by her too! Before we begin, I will be putting a trigger warning on The Winter Sister for violence, alcohol addiction, and disturbing content. Now, let’s get to it:

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Thirty year old Sylvie is simply drifting through her life. She works as a tattoo artist but doesn’t love it, has no close relationships other than her aunt, cousin, and best friend, and is estranged from her mother. After her sister, Persephone, was murdered when they were in their teens and the case was never solved, Sylvie’s life as she knew it was indefinitely changed and nothing ever got better.

The pain of the loss of her sister is a wound that is just as fresh to Sylvie as if it happened yesterday. The guilt and grief has never left and the fact that the murderer is still at large remains at the forefront of her thoughts. So, her days drag on into the next and all Sylvie can do is try to stay afloat.

While Sylvie was in college, she moved away from her childhood town and hasn’t been back since. However, when she gets a call from her aunt that she has to take over caring for her mother suffering from cancer, she finds herself back at the place where her pain began. After Persephone’s death, Sylvie’s mom began to drink herself into a stupor every day and could no longer care for her. Now, it is Sylvie that is going to be taking care of her mom.

Saying that the relationship between Sylvie and her mom is rocky is putting it nicely and having to sleep in the bedroom that her and Persephone once shared makes the situation even more difficult. However, learning that her sister’s ex boyfriend and former suspect in her murder, Ben, works at the cancer center her mom goes to makes matters even worse. After all of these years, everyone is still one hundred percent convinced that Ben is the one to blame. But is he really?

As new information on Persephone’s death begins to come to light, everything that Sylvie once was certain of starts to shift. And, although she’s not thrilled about it, her and Ben join forces to put the pieces of this decade old puzzle together. Dark secrets are revealed as everyone seems to have played a part in Persephone’s demise and there are Red Herrings lurking around every corner. Will Persephone’s murder finally be solved? Read The Winter Sister to find out!

I enjoyed The Winter Sister SO much, especially because the book that I had read before starting it was extremely lackluster. It felt good to have a thriller that I could sink my teeth into and I devoured this read in about three sittings. Once I opened it up, I couldn’t stop reading! Of course, I love when a book surprises me and, although I solved every twist and turn prior to the reveals, I still hold a high opinion of The Winter Sister.

Johnny and I are huge true crime fans so a book revolving around an unsolved murder is right up my alley. The Winter Sister was interesting because the answers weren’t so cut and dry. Despite only one person being responsible for Persephone’s death, every character had something to do with the moments leading up to it. Sylvie seems to hold herself personally responsible for her sister’s murder and her grief is so palpable it’s painful.

I can’t say that Sylvie was one of my favorite main characters to read about but I still liked her a lot. Her strength is, obviously, apparent but she is so clouded with her shortcomings that I never felt like her true self was ever revealed and that would have been nice to see. The supporting characters sometimes overpowered Sylvie’s story and I loved her best friend and aunt. And, although there were times when I despised Sylvie’s mother, I was still excited to read the parts with her in it.

A part of me wonders if I think that The Winter Sister was an excellent read because the book I had read before sucked so bad lol. But, I don’t think that that’s the case and I definitely recommend giving it a try if you can stomach it. I am going to rate The Winter Sister with an eight out of ten stars and I am looking forward to reading another book by Megan Collins.

What are you currently reading? What should I read next? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah