Hi everyone! So here we are, our first quarterly rewind of the year and I know I say this all the time but I can’t believe how quickly it came around. This winter has been fairly quiet for me, with Omicron at its height early in the year, I didn’t do as much as I’d been planning to in January and though I did get around to doing the things I’d pushed back in February, work has been a lot quieter recently and I’ve not been getting as many shifts, which has meant a lot of time at home over the past couple of weeks! I’m hoping that things will start to pick up again soon though as we have new cohorts coming in to be vaccinated, as honestly, I’ve been a little bored!
Anyway, yesterday was the Spring Equinox, the first official day of Spring (and we are finally starting to get some nice weather here in the U.K.!) so that means it’s once again time for another Quarterly Rewind, the feature where I wrap up the current season on my blog and look forward to what’s to come. So today, I will be wrapping up Winter and looking forward to Spring. This post will cover 21st December-19th March:
Image From This Winter:
I will admit, I haven’t taken a huge number of pictures this Winter, just because I’ve not really been going anywhere! However, I did take this one when I was on a run last month and wanted to share it as I thought the rainbow was really pretty.
Favourite Quote From A Book You Read This Winter:
“My pain was never more valuable than his potential.” -Chanel Miller, Know My Name
I could have picked any number of lines from Chanel Miller’s extremely powerful memoir, but this is one that has really stuck with me since reading it.
This Winter In One Word:
Most Popular Review of Winter:
I’ve finally managed to get back on track with my reviews after the disaster that was last year, and I intend to keep it that way (though those may be famous last words). Of the eight reviews that I’ve posted between the end of December and now, the most popular one was of The Nobleman’s Guide To Scandal and Shipwrecks, not too surprising as it is the series finale of a popular series:
Top Two Books I’ve Read This Winter:
I’m still firmly on the audiobook train, though I suspect that with the weather getting warmer and the lure of reading outside on the horizon, I will probably get back into physical books more over the Spring and Summer. This winter was apparently all about the memoirs as my top two favourites, both five star reads, were both memoirs. I’ve been really getting into memoirs recently so I suspect there will be a few more on my 2022 reading list, but these were my two favourites from this Winter:
- Born A Crime-Trevor Noah
Trevor Noah’s memoir was my last read of 2021 and what a read to end on! It was equal parts funny and touching and I liked the non-traditional structure. Noah is a brilliant and engaging narrator, and I hope he writes more books because I would definitely listen to the audio!
2. Know My Name-Chanel Miller
I read this one last month, and it’s one of the most beautiful, powerful and emotional memoirs I’ve ever read. I don’t often say that everyone should read anything, but this is one of those books that I would be very tempted to say that about, because everyone needs to understand the way the criminal justice system re-traumatizes rape survivors so that they will never again say “Why didn’t she report it?”.
TV Shows I’m Looking Forward To This Spring
Honestly I just don’t have many plans for Spring yet, my family is going to be moving to London sometime in May, but other that that, I’ve really just not planned much, so I figured I would have more to say about TV I’m excited for.
- The Great British Bake Off Celebrity Specials
BAKE OFF IS BACK! As usual in the Spring, we get the Stand Up To Cancer specials where celebrities bake for charity, and it’s always so hilarious because half of them cannot bake at all. It definitely helps having this series early on in the year to break up the wait for the main series to return in the autumn.
2. Dynasties II
The new David Attenborough series started last night and I’m so happy! This is the follow up to the 2018 series Dynasties which follows a family of animals as they raise their young. Last night’s puma cubs were so cute!
3. Heartland Season 15
This is cheating slightly because I started watching it yesterday and I’m already halfway through, but I’m just so glad that the newest series of Heartland finally arrived on Netflix yesterday as we’ve been waiting months to get it here in the U.K.
I will admit to not having read Alice Oseman’s graphic novels, but to be honest, it seems like more of the kind of thing I would enjoy as a TV series anyway. I saw the trailer when it came out last week, and it looked really cute, so I’m looking forward to watching the series when it comes out next month (I will admit, I was sold when I saw there was a cute dog in the production photos on Twitter).
5. Killing Eve Season 4
This actually started a couple of weeks ago but I didn’t include it in my Autumn roundup as it didn’t have a release date then, so I’m including it here. I’m really excited to see how Eve and Villanelle’s story wraps up.
Three New Obsessions This Winter:
- Wordle-Yes, I hopped on board the Wordle train and yes I’m as obsessed as everyone else is. It’s just strangely fun getting stupidly frustrated trying to work out a new five letter word every day, and massively satisfying when you do! I also have several spin-off versions, Taylordle (for Taylor Swift themed words), Hogwartle (Harry Potter) and Friendle (Friends)!
- This Is Going To Hurt-I’ve been watching the BBC drama adaptation of Adam Kay’s junior doctor diaries over the past month, I just finished it last week and I am BROKEN by episode 6, but thoroughly obsessed. I hope they do a Season 2!
- Inventing Anna-Yes okay, another one where I jumped on the bandwagon, but Inventing Anna was just such a fun watch, I blazed through it in less than a week.
Five Most Popular Blog Posts This Winter:
As has become common for this section I’ve got a mix of older reviews and Top Ten Tuesday posts, it’s definitely nice to see my reviews still getting some love a year or so after they first went out.
- The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue Review
Addie LaRue is becoming a permanent feature in this section it seems! This is its fourth appearance in as many Quarterly Rewind posts. I’m glad to see more and more people keep finding this review and hopefully VE Schwab through it (not that she isn’t already massively popular!).
2. A Good Girl’s Guide To Murder Review
I was quite surprised to see this one pop up on my most popular list for this Rewind as it’s a fairly old review, back from 2020, but I guess the final book did come out last year and maybe people were looking for it as a way to refresh their memories as to what happened in the first book? I don’t know, but I’m always glad to see my older reviews getting some love!
3. Top Ten Tuesday #350
This Top Ten Tuesday was back from the beginning of January, where I was talking about my Reading/Blogging/Writing Goals for 2022. You’ll find out how I’m doing on those when I do my mid-year check in post sometime in June/July, but in the meantime, I’m really happy that this post got so much love. Even if I don’t always achieve all my goals, I really like drawing them up at the beginning of each year, I like having something to aim towards.
4. Top Ten Tuesday #359
My Top Ten Tuesday post from last week. My seasonal TBRs are always well loved, so I’m glad to see that you guys were as excited for my Spring TBR as I am.
5. Top Ten Tuesday #358
Another recent Top Ten Tuesday post, from two weeks ago, this was one where I talked about books with one of my favourite tropes, Found Family, so I’m glad to see that you guys love found family books as much as I do.
Three Posts I Enjoyed This Winter:
I’m still massively horrible at keeping track of articles and posts that I enjoy, but I did manage to find three for you this time:
- Maya Oppenheim did this great piece for The Independent about her experience of having an abortion and how the UK government is, surprise, surprise failing women when it comes to being able to access abortion services.
3. Jonn Elledge did this really great piece for The New Statesman about basically how ridiculous the question about why the birth rate is declining is. Now I’m not someone who wants to have kids anyway, but I loved this piece because I find all those think-pieces worrying about the birth rate declining so ridiculous: it’s quite obvious to anyone who cares to look, people can’t afford to have kids and if they do, they worry about bringing them into a world of war, pandemics and potential looming disaster from climate change. Pretty simple really!
Five Shows That I Enjoyed This Winter:
- Death In Paradise Series 11
I loved the latest series of Death In Paradise when it aired this winter, the dose of winter sun never fails to cheer me up, and I was so happy that they did a Christmas special last year! I’m even more happy that they’re going to do another one this year.
2. Call The Midwife Series 11
I’m still not over the last couple of episodes of this series to be honest. The wait between episode 7 & episode 8 felt like the longest wait for anything ever. Call The Midwife is still going strong even this far into its run, and I was glad to have it back in its usual winter time slot this year. I was also really glad that the social distancing was less distractingly obvious in this series than it was in the last one!
3. This Is Going To Hurt
I mentioned this earlier on in the post, but I watched This Is Going To Hurt over the past month and just finished the last two episodes last week (I couldn’t wait another week to watch episode 7 after the ending of episode 6). It’s quite a tough watch, so I would say really not a binger, but I thoroughly enjoyed it. I will also be forever broken after Episode 6.
4. The Marvelous Mrs Maisel Season 4
I finished the last two episodes of The Marvelous Mrs Maisel last Sunday, and I was just so happy to have it back! Midge’s wardrobe is better than ever, and we got a lot of stand-up this series which I was really pleased about.
5. This Is Us Season 6
The final season of This Is Us is making my Thursday nights at the moment. I’m so glad that this series it seems like we’re finally going to see how Rebecca and Miguel got together as that is something I’ve been wanting to know for ages!
Two Things That Happened This Winter
I know I said I didn’t do much this winter, but there are a couple of things I did that I wanted to share:
- I went to an exhibition about Elizabeth I and Mary Queen of Scots at the British Library last month which was really cool. They had so many really awesome documents and artefacts that I’d never seen before, including a replica of the “Gallows Letter” which incriminated Mary and led to her execution!
- I went to see Operation Mincemeat at the Southwark Playhouse and it was probably the most I’ve laughed at any musical ever! It’s such a clever and well done production, the five actors play multiple different parts, the music is awesome, it’s ridiculously funny….and it’s based on a real WWII operation! It’s running again at Riverside Studios from 28th April-9th July so if you’re looking for something to do in London, I highly recommend!
Six Songs I’ve Listened To Way Too Often This Winter
- Shivers-Ed Sheeran
It’s come up a lot on my iPod this winter, and it’s probably my favourite song from Ed’s most recent album, so I’m definitely not complaining about that.
2. I’ll Be There For You-The Rembrandts
I just finished my rewatch of Friends, so yeah….I was listening to this a lot.
3. The Lucky One-Taylor Swift
This one seems to have come up a few times on my shuffle recently and it’s one of my favourite songs from Red (and a vastly underappreciated one I think!).
4-6. Taylor Swift Instrumentals
I’m grouping the last three into one because back in February I found Taylor Swift instrumentals on Youtube and I am in love (pardon the pun!). They were really great for when I was working on job applications and needed background noise but no words!
So there we go, that was my Winter! A really quiet one, I’m hoping that Spring will bring a little more excitement, and an uptick in my work. What have you enjoyed the most on my blog this Winter (or Summer if you’re a southern hemisphere reader)? What have you been up to? Let me know in the comments!