2017 christmas haul

hey, friends. :)

i’m finally putting up that christmas haul that i promised. please keep in mind that i’m not trying to brag — i’m thankful for everything i received (except maybe the stamps) and just wanted to share.

idk. let’s get into it.

stocking stuffers

i got a lot of candy in my stocking — these are the only two that i haven’t eaten already. my mom thought she was being funny by getting me turtles, because i’d been asking for a pet turtle all year.

i love lip balm!! this one is hershey’s brand. idk what flavor it is because the packaging got thrown out, but it’s kind of fruity with a tiny bit of peppermint.

my brother and i both got fun string. i sprayed it in his hair as soon as i got it open and have been tormenting him with it ever since.

let’s ignore the change of scenery.

the last thing in my stocking was this tiny music box. it plays the song somewhere over the rainbow. :)

from family

my brother gave me animal crossing: new leaf. i named my town hell, which makes the conversations about moving in much more interesting. for example: “so do you go to hell very often?” “i sure hope you find a sweet little house and have lots of fun making new friends in hell!”

of course i got books. i’m super excited to read these, especially nightfall and everland.

i got a white sweatshirt (very soft on the inside) with this informative sign on top of it. apparently my mom is going to print out the dear evan hansen logo and iron it onto the shirt. personally, i think she’s going to forget out it and never help me, but it’s whatever.

ft. barakat the plant

i picked out these pajamas and got to open them on christmas eve. they’re incredibly soft, and they’ve got pockets and a hood.

i’m not a fan of purses, they get in my way and it’s hard to run with one. but i need something to carry my junk around in. you see my problem?

so grandparents #1 got me this cute mini backpack. :)

grandma #2 bought these things for all the kids. i’m not really sure what it is, but it’s very loud.

some candy that will likely find its way into my brother’s stomach.

grandma #2 planned a game where tiny trinkets were bundled up in a ball of cling wrap. we passed it around in a circle while the person who had it before tried to roll doubles on some dice. once they got it, the ball and dice were handed off again. you got to keep whatever you tore from the ball on your turn.

why did she think kids would like stamps for christmas? who knows.

i also got some seeds from the cling wrap ball! granted, most of them are probably too old to grow anything from, but i’ll still try.

from some other family members, i got a face mask and summer fruit eos. my brother got the bubble bath and lip balm (avon iced gingerbread) in the cling wrap ball and gave them to me.

i’ve never used a face mask in my life, so i’m excited to try it out.

in my family, christmas is not complete without getting lots of money. i got $190, as well as target and chick-fil-a gift cards. i’m not sure what i’m going to spend the money on yet — maybe books or clothes (i’m thinking oh wonder merch).

from friends

my friend izzy spoils me. she got me a ton of stuff and i love her for it.

the first thing she gave me is a beanie with wireless speakers sewn into it. i can connect my ipod to its bluetooth and play my music while everyone thinks i’m listening to them. it was more of a joke then an actual gift, since izzy didn’t think it would work, but it surprisingly does.

another thing she got me is this beautiful dear evan hansen case! it’s a bit too big for my ipod, but i stuffed a tissue into it and now it’s good.

izzy took me to the mall and let me get whatever i wanted. i found all time low’s don’t panic album on cd at this sick music store. it’s mostly clean, which means i can play it in the car when i’m with my mom.

i dragged her to hot topic to hunt for pins. she hates the store because she had a dream where vampires that were hiding there kidnapped her or something like that. anyway, i found a few pins there: bob ross, panic! at the disco’s logo, and for loser.

we also found this gravity falls patch for my jacket.

from k, i got a wooden L, a picture frame, and an ornament of the white rabbit from alice in wonderland.

she always gets me something alice in wonderland-themed. over the years, i’ve gotten the complete works of lewis carroll, a mad hatter origami kit, etc.


i went to a christmas party with bethany and mckenna and got these at the white elephant gift exchange. they came in a bag with a can of refried beans and gas-x, but idk where those are now. i gave the gas-x to my brother as a joke, which he didn’t think was funny.

i’m going to use the itunes card to get the heathers soundtrack, because it’s not on spotify.

honestly, what i’m most excited about is all the lip balm i got. i’ve been collecting them for years and i currently have 40+. granted, i only use about five of them, but still.

i hope you enjoyed reading my haul. :)

did we get any of the same things? what’s the best gift you received? 

xo apollo

2017 reading recap


i hope you all had a wonderful christmas. mine was fairly good. i’m currently putting together a haul, but i doubt it will be up until the new year because i have another family celebration to attend.

anyway, i saw book recaps on dragon waffles and paper fury and decided to make one myself. after all, i can only go so long without gushing/ranting about what i’ve read.

shout-out to my friend izzy for making me read paranormal/horror books.

so apparently 20% of the books i read this year were romance? that’s a bit concerning because i generally hate that genre. but it’s rare to find a contemporary that isn’t also a romance, so that probably explains it.

i had more books with lgbt+ characters on my tbr, but my mom wouldn’t let me read them. because, you know, i might become more open-minded and accepting and we can’t have that.

i’m very picky when it comes to giving five stars.

also, i don’t think i’ve ever given a book just one star in my life.

2017 favorites

(not all of these were released this year. they’re just the best ones that i read in 2017.)

how to say goodbye in robot – i started sobbing when i finished this one. (this might be because i am extremely emotional and not because the book was sad, although it was.) i really wanted everything to turn out well for ghost boy and robot girl, and it ended much differently than i expected.

tiger lily – peter pan retelling from tiger lily’s pov!! i’ve always loved peter pan and this book gave neverland new depth. it’s a romance, but not a fluffy one — it’s gritty and real and they hurt each other.

all the bright places – i know this one is controversial, but i actually loved it a lot. i read it when i was “asleep,” as finch would say, and it stuck with me because it was like i was reading about myself.

 the empty grave – thanks for ripping out my heart, stroud. i hate you for putting my sweet children through that.

lucky few – homeschoolers with death wishes!! sounds like my autobiography.

heap house – originally, i thought it was just really, really weird, but it’s been growing on me since then.

prettiest covers

(currently still reading the girl who drank the moon, but i can include it because i said so.)


i might get hate for this, but i detest most of these and have no idea why they’re so popular.

must read in 2018

 how can i call myself a bookworm if i haven’t read any of maggie stiefvater’s books??

have you read any of the books i mentioned? do you agree/disagree with me on my picks for the overhyped section? let me know in the comments.

xo apollo

spooky time

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happy halloween, my friends! enjoy the spookiness of today, because tomorrow everyone will start singing christmas songs. and make sure to eat lots of candy, of course. (i can’t eat most halloween candy because of my braces. sigh.)

i have always wanted to be a ghost (i cannot say why), and i was finally able to achieve my dream this year. behold apollo, a rad little ghost.

thank you to my mom for taking these pictures for me. and for not asking questions when i said i needed her to photograph me dressed as a ghost.

can someone photoshop the anime blushing thing onto this one, please and thank you.

you can’t tell, but i’m doing jazz hands, because i’m still a theatre kid.

i don’t have a face and i still manage to look disappointed.

i fly.

me @ myself: you’re dead to me.

this is my personality summed up in one picture.

vroom vroom, dirtbag.

to my friends who are undoubtedly going to send this picture to my crush: please don’t.

i went trick-or-treating for the first time this weekend!! it wasn’t the normal door-to-door way. instead, my friend izzy and i went to this campground, where people sat in front of their campers/tents and gave out candy. izzy originally wasn’t going to collect candy, she was just going to steal mine. but then i used the power of math on her: “if we both trick-or-treat, then once we’re done, we’ll have the amount of candy that i have . . . times two.” she realized how clever this plan was and started getting candy, as well. but she ended up not sharing with me at all?? she just took my butterfingers and didn’t give me anything back. oh well.

there was a haunted house there, too. more like a haunted tent, i guess, but it’s the same thing. one room was filled with dry ice and sheer cloth hanging from the ceiling, and people with really creepy clown masks got right up in your face and walked beside you as you tried to leave the room.

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highlights of my trick-or-treating experience:

– someone was giving out wasabi peas!!

– there was a girl dressed as an old lady, she had a mask and a walker and everything.

– a little girl who izzy babysits held my hand and gave me kisses on the cheek. ^.^

– there were no other mabel pines, which means my idea was sort of original.

– izzy’s brother was dressed as a robot and someone asked if he was a washing machine.

– a guy in a freddy krueger mask snuck up on izzy and made her scream.

i hope you guys enjoyed the pictures. they were fun to take, even though i couldn’t see.

happy halloween!

xo apollo

my nano project


nanowrimo starts in six days and i’m still not prepared. shocking!!

  i wanted to thank you guys for helping me pick a story to work on this year. i ended up deciding on the “angst-y teen aliens” idea and have spent the last few days trying to flesh out the characters/plot so i don’t have to start nano without a plan.

anyway, i wanted to introduce you to my story, and hopefully talking about it will help me sort everything out in my head. details are still iffy, so things will probably change, but these are my current ideas.



taz of titan – mc

here we have my beautiful (possible) antihero. he lives on titan (one of saturn’s moons) with his dad and twin brother. do i know anything else about the main character? not really!! but that’s fine, because i have six entire days to come up with his backstory/goals/fears/arc/personality before nano.


zen of titan – taz’s brother

you know how some people have a new crush every week? zen is one of those people. he’s probably fallen in love with a toothbrush at some point. who knows. anyway, him falling in love is the whole reason that your favorite teenage aliens end up going to earth in the first place.


lulu of iapetus – nerd

(i promise that being a nerd isn’t her entire role.)

lulu and her family are refugees from the moon iapetus. they live in a cramped apartment with two other families. lulu is friends with taz and zen, and she comes with them on their intergalactic roadtrip for the sake of research (and having a good time).


*he doesn’t get a collage because i haven’t given his character much thought*

“tommy” of rhea – the annoying child

i haven’t actually picked a name for him yet, so i’ll be calling him tommy until i can think of something better.

he’s visiting his grandparents, who are neighbors of taz and zen. he just so happens to overhear them planning their adventure, tommy decides to sneak into their ship, because everyone loves him, right? he’s incredibly aggravating and everyone wants to launch him out of the airlock until either a special skill, tragic backstory, or heroic move redeems him. maybe. and then they all develop a family dynamic with him at the center, because i need to put my ships in domestic situations for important reasons.


there’s also going to be an important human character, but idk anything about that yet.


– nasa’s golden record shows up and now my aliens know that humans are a thing

– acquire spaceship

– intergalactic roadtrip part

– earth shenanigans

– ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

i’m only aiming for 15k this year, because i haven’t written since last november, which menas i’m probably very rusty. but if i’m making good progress, i’ll boost it by a few thousand words. we’ll just have to see.

 as you can tell, i have virtually no clue where this story is going. so nano should be incredibly interesting this year.

good luck with your stories, my friends!

xo apollo