the best books bloggers recommend

The Best Books That Bloggers/Writers Recommend

It’s no secret that I love to write (obviously…) but my true great love is reading. I love reading. Put me in a Barnes & Noble or on the beach with a good book & I’ll be happy for hours. I truly believe good books are good for the soul–hence why I’m constantly searching for new things to read.

I wrote a list of book recommendations here a few summers ago with some of my favorites, but I decided to ask a few of my blogger friends what books they love because, again, most writers love reading & more importantly, we appreciate really really good books. 

Whether you’re looking for a psychological thriller (some of my favorites are thrown in here) or an inspirational self-help book, this list has got it all, complete with commentary. Enjoy!

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20 Random Things I’m Thankful For

Happy Thanksgiving! While I’m thankful for the major things like the wonderful people in my life (shoutout to the parents, Krista, family, my nova & home friends and Ry) and a few big things (my job, awesome apartment, Villanova basketball, Starbucks, white wine & brunch), here’s a list of the random little things I’m grateful for too.

1. Turkey trots

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We have a Jaworski-family tradition of running a Turkey Trot every year. It started with my dad and uncle, but some years we’ve had up to 10 of us running it. It’s a nice way to start Thanksgiving and bond with my dad.

2. Chapstick 


I’m legitimately addicted to Burt’s Bees and I don’t care who knows it.

3. TV shows online


Let’s be real, most of my favorite shows I never watch live. Thank goodness for being able to binge watch them online.

4. Nude heels

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Because when you find the perfect pair, you win at life.

5. Gel manicures


Best feeling= having your nails done. Worst feeling= them chipping. Solution= gel manicures.

6. Raspberries


I’m 95% sure I could eat a whole carton in one sitting. #noshame

7. Semi-sweet chocolate chips


On a similar food note, I keep a bag of these in the fridge at all times. My roommate Haley can attest to this.

8. Sunsets

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photo creds: Joe

What’s better than a good sunset on the water?

9. Emojis


Specifically those above.

10. Frank Sinatra’s Christmas Album 


Which I started listening to approximately 2 weeks ago.

11. The Princess Bride


One of the best movies of all time. If you haven’t seen it, I highly recommend it.

12. Cups of tea/coffee


Plus a cozy blanket & some candles.

13. Leggings


Now that I can’t wear them almost every day to class, I appreciate them more on the weekends.

14. The Villanova Church


Have you ever seen anything more perfect?

15. Doing laundry at your parents’ house

Because it’s *~FREE~* (and your mom might fold it for you).

16. Waking up and realizing you have more time to sleep

One of the best feelings in the world.

17. Good pens & legal pads

You know the feeling of writing with a really good pen. Or when you check something off your to-do list. And I just like taking notes on legal pads because it makes me feel important.

18. Fresh flowers


Because they’re just so happy :)

19. Listening to country music in the summer

Specifically, windows down on the way to the shore. It’s the best, y’all.

20. Blogging


And for everyone who continues to read, I’m really thankful for you!

Here’s to Thanksgiving & being grateful for the little things &.

23 Things I Learned When I Was 22

Twenty two was a big year for me; A lot of things happened to say the least. I ended a serious long term relationship and started a new one. I graduated college. I landed a job. I rented an apartment, ended my barista career and sorta became a yogi. I travelled, learned, cried and grew. Ampersand became a legitimate thing while I was 22, as did my love of writing. 22 was a year of change. Despite that–or maybe because of it–22 was one of the best years of my life.

Last year on my birthday, I wrote a post of all the things I wanted to accomplish by the time I turned 23. Having completed most of the things on that list, I only thought it would be fitting to share some life lessons I’ve learned these past 365 days. Cheers to turning 23.

1. Yoga is a wonderful thing. If you don’t believe me, you haven’t done it enough. I first turned to yoga because I wanted to try something new. I turned back to it when I lost my way, and once again when I needed to feel grounded. Words cannot begin to describe the things I learned about myself on my yoga mat.{Shout out to Prana House Yoga for my beautiful birthday practice on Saturday!}


2. Hang onto good friends. My life wouldn’t be as half as fun, happy or full without my best friends. I’m lucky enough to still be friends with my girls from childhood and to have gone to Villanova with some of the best people I will ever meet. All my favorite memories from this year have been because of the amazing people around me.

3. Brunch is always a good idea. What’s better than good friends, good coffee and french toast? There’s always time for brunch.

+1000 basic points.

4. Sometimes, you have to be spontaneous. Yes, you have to be responsible. But spontaneity makes you feel young. It makes you feel adventurous. It makes memories that you’ll tell you kids someday and then they’ll think you’re cool. Just do it because why not?

5. And other times, you just have to be patient. Anyone who knows me knows that I’m not patient. But sometimes there’s nothing you can do but… wait. I learned this the hard way with looking for a job, but I ended up in a position that fits me so well, and I can’t imagine being anywhere else right now. Good things are always worth the wait.

6. Love comes in different forms. And they’re all beautiful. Love changes and grows, that’s why it’s amazing.


7. Thank your familyThis past year, I won an award based on my leadership and academic achievements at college. My parents attended the ceremony and dinner and it was that night that I realized I couldn’t have achieved anything without them. If they hadn’t supported me, challenged me or encouraged me, I literally wouldn’t be the person I am today. Karen & Joe, I really do owe you everything.

Cheers to Joe & Karen.

8. Dreams change & that’s okay. For the longest time, I dreamt of becoming a magazine editor. I chased my editorial dreams with a fierce determination all year, only to realize that it might not be what I want to do. At first, I was disappointed and upset with myself that I gave up searching for an editorial position for a job in PR, but then I realized that it’s okay to change my mind. It’s part of being human.

9. Don’t get too comfortable. 1. Because things change, quickly and 2. The best things happen at the edge of your comfort zones. If you’re not a little scared or uncomfortable, then you’re not growing. Keep pushing yourself.

10. Joy & sorrow go hand-in-hand. “The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain” –Kahil Gibran.


11. There’s usually a silver lining. Some situations just suck. Sometimes you can’t figure out “the reason.” But sooner or later, you’ll realize the silver lining, no matter how small. Plus, a little positivity never hurt anyone.

12. Hang out with your siblings. Because they’re the best friends you’ll ever have. I’m not only lucky to have Krista, I’m even luckier that I can call her a friend.


13. Save your money, but not all of it. The end of my 22nd year and beginning of my 23rd has been spent thinking A LOT about money. Adulting is expensive! While it’s good to save for your future, we can’t go around not doing things because we’re so terrified of spending money. Great conversations with friends are worth spending money on dinner. Get a manicure when you have a crappy day at work because it will make you feel better. Money is good for saving, but you make it so you can spend it, too.

14. Be goofy. Ryan is a goof-ball. Sorry for outing you babe, but it’s true. And honestly, it’s probably one of my favorite things about him. He brings out a silly, goofy, giggly side of me that I love. We laugh a lot which makes life more fun. He’s taught me to not take myself too seriously.

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15. Read good booksBecause bad books suck and kill you soul and ain’t nobody got time for them.

16. Networking does help…But so does just being a good friend. I’ve learned valuable professional skills from networking, but I ultimately landed my job because I kept in touch with a friend. Networking is necessary, but ultimately if you’re just a good person and are nice to people, you’ll be fine.

new friends!

17. Find a mentor. Or two. I’m lucky to have multiple intelligent, strong and kind women that I look up to. I’ve also been fortunate enough to have their help and guidance, professionally and personally. Role models can really make a difference (especially when you have no idea what you’re doing with your life).

18.  Throw away your checklists. This is surprising coming from the girl who makes a daily to-do list on a legal pad every day at work. What I mean is, don’t make a check list for everything. It’s probably healthy to have nothing to do some days or not pressuring yourself to get everything done, every single day. Do random stuff you didn’t write down with a box next to it.

19. Be kind. Because there’s no reason not to be.

20. Know your worth. In relationships, at work, in life. You don’t deserve to be disrespected, lead on or treated poorly, ever. It’s not worth it because you’re worth more than that.

21. Trust what got you here. This is one of my favorite things that I heard this year. We may not know where exactly what we’re doing or where we’re going, but you have a whole life of experience behind you and you’ve made it this far, right? Trust the same will help you in the future.


22. Soak it all in. Aka be present. It’s probably one of the most challenging things to accomplish, but I’m determined to make a habit out of it.

23. All you have is time. Hearing this as a freshman at Villanova’s Orientation, my mind was blown. I don’t think I fully understood it until I became a senior when I felt like I was constantly running out of time. No time for relaxing, vacations, long conversations, family dinners, errands, coffee dates or catching up. But in reality, all we have is time. And we have the control of how we spend it.

Here’s to 22 being great & 23 being an adventure.

{Thank you to all the people who made 22 amazing!}