Monthly Wrap-Up: December 2022

Hello, welcome back to my blog! I hope you are having a wonderful day today! ☺️ Am I the only one who can’t believe it’s the final day of 2022?

In this post, I’ll be wrapping up December: talking about what I did, the books I read, which goals I accomplished, and sharing photos from my month! Let’s dive right in!

Books I Read

I feel like I had a really good reading month! This was probably due to the fact that I was trying to hit my 2022 reading goal.

By Your Side by Kasie West was a reread for me. I listened to the audiobook while I helped clean my little sibling’s room. This was the first Kasie West book I read, last year, and maybe my favorite, although it’s hard to rank her books! They are such cute, quick contemporary books that are easy to read, yet are still wholesome.

Far From the Tree by Robin Benway was my second book of the month, borrowed from the library. Although there were some aspects I did not like, I was able to overlook that and appreciate other points of the story. I liked it fairly well, although I was a bit disappointed with the ending for some reason.

I Must Betray You by Ruta Sepetys was just…amazing. Her books are always very good, informational, historical fiction novels, but they still are interesting and easier to read than a history textbook. This Ruta Sepetys book was no different; I learned a lot about a time in history I rarely hear of, 1989 Romania. I really hope she writes more amazing YA historical fiction novels!

The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary E. Pearson was very interesting. It’s not a genre I would normally be picking up, but my sister and I read it together so we could discuss it afterward, and I thought that it was a very thought-provoking book. I feel like the story didn’t really revolve around the characters, but more the question of how far is too far in medical science. It definitely made me think of things I’d never considered before, and I like that.

Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen was the third Jane Austen book I’ve read, and I really enjoyed it! Although it is an older book, I was able to follow along pretty well, and may be one of my favorite Jane Austen books so far.

Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain was a book I was assigned to read for school, but I actually enjoyed it a bit. I found it very fun at points, yet I didn’t see a very clear storyline in it.

To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han was another reread of the month. I remember really liking these when I read them last year, but this time, I feel as if I don’t as much. I was getting fairly annoyed by Peter Kavinsky, and just some things in the story.

P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han is the second book in the series. Again, it wasn’t as good as I remember it being the first time. One thing I do enjoy from these books, though, is the sister relationships!

Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens was the perfect Christmas read! This was actually my first time reading it, though I’ve watched the movie multiple times. I really liked it! I like the story overall, and many of the descriptions throughout the book.

Stranger Things: The Other Side by Jody Houser is a comic book about the tv show, Stranger Things. I enjoyed it, although I don’t usually read comics. This is one of my favorite shows, and I read through this graphic novel in one sitting!

Today, on the last day of 2022, I am reading The Librarian of Auschwitz by Antonio Iturbe. I am probably going to finish it today, as I have only about 150 pages left in it as I am posting this. I think that it’s very well so far, and contains many good quotes.

Crochet Projects

This month, I got a few Christmas decorations finished, as well as many of my Christmas presents, despite my resolutions to get presents finished early this year! πŸ˜…

Blog Posts on “Books and Hooks”

DIY Book Tree: BetsyJane’s Blog Tour

The Christmas Tag

Five Last-Minute Gift Ideas: Collab With Diamond!

Merry Christmas // A Christmas Poem

Reviewing December’s Goals

  • Go to bed by ten each night. Not every night, but I do feel like I’ve improved my sleep schedule this month.
  • Bake some Christmas cookies. Yes! My family and I made many Christmas cookies and treats this year! I’ll add pictures of some of them at the bottom of the post!
  • Complete my reading goal. Yes, this year’s goal was 52 books, and I finished with 55 books read this year. (If I finish the book I’m currently reading today.)
  • Practice the piano every day and learn some Christmas songs. Nope!
  • Make a Christmas music playlist. I added some new songs to a playlist my sister made last year, so kind of, I guess.
  • Go thrift shopping. I did go thrift shopping a couple times this month, mostly to buy Christmas gifts and decorations!
  • Get some more yarn. I did! I mostly needed to get some to make some presents, but I also bought some Christmas colored yarn and made myself a hat!
  • Decorate for Christmas. Yup!

Goals for January

  • Get into a new running routine.
  • Post weekly on both of my blogs.
  • Create a new schedule.
  • Drink eight cups of water a day.
  • Write every day.
  • Get new glasses.
  • Go through my clothes and get rid of stuff.
  • Read a classic.
  • Journal every day.

Pictures From My Month

What Happened in December?

  • The main thing in December was Christmas! Although I didn’t get to go visit relatives due to some sickness going around, I had a fun Christmas with my family!
  • My mom graduated from nursing school as well this month.
  • I did a lot of baking, decorating, and crocheting this month!
  • For Christmas, I got a notebook from my sister, and I have started to write another book! It is a contemporary novel, and maybe I will write a post about it soon.
  • Now, I’ve started planning out my January and 2023.

That’s all for today! How was your December? Do you have anything exciting going on in January? I’d love to chat in the comments!

Check out for a post next week for a yearly wrap-up and an overview of my 2023!


Merry Christmas // A Christmas Poem

Hello and merry Christmas, everyone! How is your Christmas day going?

I am having a lovely day so far, just relaxing and spending time with my family. I am not going to do a big post for today (and I’m not sure I’ll post anything tomorrow) but I thought that I’d pop in here and wish everyone a joyous Christmas day!

I also decided to share a little poem, written by my younger self. Keep in mind that I was probably about seven or eight when this was written and I didn’t know a lot about poem writing, so it’s definitely not the best, but I just wanted to share something about the true meaning of Christmas, and why we celebrate this lovely season. Enjoy!

When fall is gone, and winter’s here,

I know Christmas is very near.

We put up the tree, and light the lights,

Whose soft glow looks so pretty in the dark night.

On Christmas morning, you may see

Many gifts under the tree.

But, make sure not to forget:

The reason of Christmas is not the gifts.

Jesus was born on Christmas night.

In a world full of darkness, He became our light!

This is a beautiful thing to remember. Sure, presents are exciting, and baking cookies are fun, and all of these festivities seem to spread the joy of Christmas.

But, what are we really celebrating? Jesus’ birth! The coming of our Savior! To me, that is more exciting, more joyful than anything else. Just something to reflect upon.

Merry Christmas again; I hope your day is full of love, peace, and joy, family and friends!

Five Last-Minute Gift Ideas: Collab With Diamond!

Hello, and welcome back to Books and Hooks! I hope that your week is off to a good start. ☺

This post is a collaboration with Diamond from β€œI Have 12% of a Plan”! She reached out to me last month, asking if I wanted to do a collab with this amazing idea, and I gladly agreed. I would really recommend checking out her blog, and her five last-minute gift ideas for this holiday season!

With Christmas quickly approaching this weekend, some people may be hurrying to finish making and buying gifts for their friends and family members. I know what it’s like…hurrying to come up with gift ideas, finishing up and wrapping the gifts just days before Christmas comes. For that reason, today’s post is a list of five last-minute gifts, featuring four handmade/homemade gifts made from things many people have around their house, along with one store-bought gift idea!

I couldn’t choose between this image and the one above, so I decided to incorporate them both! Which is your favorite?

1: Baking mix

Is there someone who loves baking in your life? Why not gift them a homemade baking mix? If you have some basic ingredients, you will be able to make a lovely, thoughtful gift that the recipient will enjoy baking! What’s even better? Your homemade baking mix will look great in a jar, maybe with a festive ribbon tied on the top!

To make a baking mix, just layer all of the dry ingredients from a certain recipe into a jar, so that the person receiving this gift will be able to add the other ingredients and quickly whip up a delicious treat! Be sure to give them the baking instructions! Here are four different cake mixes that look amazing, and there are also many recipes online for all types of cakes, brownies, and cookies that you can find online!

2: Decorated mug

I know I’m not the only one who loves receiving personalized gifts, and I’m not the only one who loves warm drinks, such as coffee and tea. This gift idea incorporates the two: personalized decorated mugs! Decorating mugs is a really fun thing to do, and it’s something that many people will appreciate being gifted with.

All you need is a plain cup (white works best with darker markers) and some oil-based sharpies. To decorate your mug, you will draw/write your design on your clean mug, and then bake it in the oven for a little while to set the ink. Here is a helpful, detailed post with full instructions.

3: Playdough

Is there a child who you are trying to make a gift for? I don’t know about you, but playdough was always a super fun gift when I was a kid. I recently learned that homemade playdough is very easy to make at home, as well. It is made with some very basic kitchen ingredients. Check here for a detailed recipe!

4: Bookmark

Any reader knows how difficult it is to keep track of bookmarks. It seems like they just go missing out of nowhere! That’s why this is an amazing gift idea, perfect for any reader. Here are eight different ways to make bookmarks! You can check out that post, and make whatever ones you have the materials for!

5: Kits/sets

Do you have time to run to a store before Christmas? Maybe you are just going to the Dollar Tree, but you want to buy something meaningful for a person you love. One good gift idea is a gift set/kit. Are you trying to come up with a gift for your friend who has a specific hobby? Maybe they like art or baking?

For example, several years back, I was at Dollar Tree and still hadn’t bought something for one of my friends. I was contemplating what to buy when my mom had a good idea to buy things to make an art/school set. I bought a pencil pouch, some pencils and pens, colorful markers, cute erasers, and some glitter glue.

If your friend likes to bake, maybe buy some cake mix, cute muffin papers, a potholder…there are a lot of directions this can go. Some ideas are a baking set, an art set, a spa set, or anything related to their hobbies or interests.

That’s it for this post! I hope you enjoyed it and got some good ideas for gifts for your friends and family! Do you procrastinate when getting gifts? Were these helpful? Do you have any more last-minute gift ideas? I’d love to hear from you in the comments!

Again, be sure to check out Diamond’s blog, and her post with five more last-minute gift ideas. I hope everyone has an amazing week. Bye for now!

The Christmas Tag

This graphic is so cute!

Hello and happy Monday! Today, I have a fun post for y’all: a Christmas tag!! Because it’s just under two weeks until this lovely holiday, I thought that I’d participate in this tag, which has been created by Addie and Shanessa. Thanks to Heidi for the nomination! This tag looks very fun, and I am excited to answer the questions! Let’s get right into it.


  1. Post graphic on your blog
  2. Nominate at least 5 bloggers
  3. Link to either of the creator’s original posts

The Questions

What is your favorite family Christmas tradition (if you have one)?

We don’t have a lot of traditions. Maybe getting up early on Christmas and talking with my siblings, and then opening gifts. Also, every year, my family goes to look for a tree, which is a fun experience and family tradition, although the trees aren’t always the best. We go and find a tree, cut it down, and then we will go on a short hike!

What is your favorite Christmas food/drink?

Christmas cookies are yummy, especially gingerbread! They’re just so Christmasy! Eggnog is also good, although I’ve only had it once.

Is Christmas your favorite holiday? Why or why not?

It’s between Christmas and Thanksgiving. In the end, I’d probably go with Christmas, but Thanksgiving is an amazing holiday as well, with food, family and friends, and being reminded of all to be thankful for. However, on Christmas, we are celebrating Christ’s birth, which makes it my favorite holiday. I just don’t like how stressful and commercialized this Christian holiday has become.

What is your favorite Christmas song?

Just one? I don’t know if I can do this, lol. πŸ˜„ I tend to enjoy listening to some of the more traditional songs and hymns, but there are also some more modern songs, too. The First Noel, What Child Is This, Breath of Heaven, Feels Like Joy, Silent Night, How Many Kings, Christmas Tree Farm, O Holy Night, Go Tell It On the Mountain…these are just a few!

What is your favorite Christmas activity?

Making Christmas cookies is really fun! I like all of the peppermint flavors and the ginger in gingerbread or gingersnaps. They smell so good baking, too!

What is your favorite Christmas memory?

I have so many! I don’t think that I can choose just one.

 What is your most favorite Christmas gift you have ever got?

Again, I’m not sure if I can decide on one. I’m not sure about my favorite, because every gift I have gotten may have been useful or something that I loved a lot, but they are all different and hard to compare.

 What is your favorite part of Christmas day?

I love going to Christmas Eve Mass, and singing Christmas hymns beforehand. However, I don’t know if this counts because we usually go on Christmas Eve instead of the morning of Christmas. On actual Christmas day, one of my favorite things is getting up early with my siblings, and just spending time with family in general.

What’s your favorite? Ham or turkey for Christmas dinner?

We don’t usually have a traditional Christmas dinner of ham or turkey. If I chose one, though, I’d go with ham. That is because we go with turkey on Thanksgiving, so we’ve usually had it more recently than ham when Christmas comes around.

 What’s your favorite Christmas story?

The birth of Jesus!

My Nominations





…and anyone else who wants to do this tag on their blog! If anyone I tagged has already done this, is tag free, or doesn’t want to do this tag, don’t feel pressured to!

The Questions

What is your favorite family Christmas tradition (if you have one)?

What is your favorite Christmas food/drink?

Is Christmas your favorite holiday? Why or why not?

What is your favorite Christmas song?

What is your favorite Christmas activity?

What is your favorite Christmas memory?

 What is your most favorite Christmas gift you have ever got?

 What is your favorite part of Christmas day?

What’s your favorite? Ham or turkey for Christmas dinner?

 What’s your favorite Christmas story?

That is all for today’s post! Are you excited for Christmas? How would you have answered these questions? I’d love to chat in the comments! I will see everybody back next week!

DIY Book Tree: BetsyJane’s Blog Tour

Hello, hello, hello, and welcome back (or welcome, if you’re new here!) to my blog! πŸ˜ƒ

I’m so happy to be participating in BetsyJane’s blog tour today. I would really recommend checking out her blog, where she shares an assortment of different posts! I get very excited when I see a new post of hers in my WordPress reader, and they’re always fun to read!

Sooo…with Christmas quickly approaching, I thought that I would share a fun Christmas-themed post for today! I also thought that this post should incorporate something with books (that word is in my blog’s name, after all) so I decided that a Christmas tree made of books would be just the thing!

Just a bit ago, my sister and I made a book tree (you may have seen it if you’ve read November’s monthly wrap-up) and I really like how it looks!

I have seen pictures of book trees like this on Instagram and such, but I always thought that they looked really complicated. Turns out, they’re actually not. So, today I’ll be walking y’all through how to make one of your own.

The materials you’ll need are…lots of books! (I know, who would have guessed? πŸ˜„) Besides that, though, you may want a topper, such as a star. You can also use some ornaments or other decorations to decorate, however, these are optional and I didn’t end up decorating my tree.

You’re going to start by getting all of the books you will be using for your book tree. I used about seventy-five, but the number of books you’ll need will vary depending on the size of the books, and how big your tree will end up. My tree is a bit more than three feet tall, excluding the star.

Be sure to use books you know you won’t be reading in the near future. You don’t want to take the tree down, because the next book on your TBR is at the bottom!

Once you have taken down all the books, sort them into stacks according to size and thickness. Try your best to do this, but it’s okay if they are slightly varying in size, as no two books will be totally identical.

When you have sorted out all of your books, you will begin building the tree. Use the three biggest books you have to create a triangle as shown. In this example, I used three β€œTaste of Home” cookbooks that are all approximately the same size.

You can either make the tree with the book spines showing, or with the pages facing outwards. I made mine with the spines showing, as to showcase different books. I think that making it with the pages outward would make a more uniform and simple-looking tree, which would probably look better decorated than with spines showing, but if the spines are facing outward, it’ll look more colorful. It really just depends on the look you are going for.

Take your next three books, which are slightly smaller than the previous ones, and make a new triangle, as shown above, as if rotating the previous triangle by 180 degrees. For this tree, you will continue in this pattern of rotating the center triangle 180 degrees.

Keep on working in this manner, gradually reducing the size of your books.

If you must, you can use two books for one layer, as shown. Just be sure that these two books equal the thickness of the other two in this triangle of the layer.

When you are almost done, and the tree is about the height you desire, take a larger book, and set it on top of the triangle, as shown in the image above.

Layer a few more books atop this one, shifting them slightly as shown. Continue stacking a few more books, decreasing the size gradually.

Finish off with the smallest book. Top with a star, if you desire. I made an origami star, and it’s propped up against a candle on top of my tree.

And, you are finished! You now have a lovely book tree!

Thank you for reading my post today! Make sure you go look at Corrie’s blog tomorrow because she will be posting the second post in this blog tour! Also, don’t forget to check out BetsyJane’s blog, poppyseeds!

How did you like today’s post? Do you have a book obsession, too? Will you be trying this out? How did it go? I’d love to hear from you in the comments!

I hope everyone has a lovely week! I may have a bonus post this week, but if not, I will see y’all on Monday! Bye until then!

P.S. Do you like my new snowflake separators and the new footer?

Merry Christmas!

Hello, and Merry Christmas! How’s your day going? I’m good! I woke up around four with some of my siblings, then we opened presents at six, and…yeah; I’m just having a great day! Hope you are too!

Our Christmas tree! πŸŽ„

So, again, Merry Christmas, and an early Happy New Years! See you on Wednesday! I hope you have a great day! Bye!

Christmas/Winter Aesthetic ❄

Another aesthetic!! Hi, welcome or welcome back to my blog, Books and Hooks! I’ve made a few aesthetics in the past, (you can see them here if you want!) I love making these; they are so fun to make and find pictures for!!

I hope to make one for a new book I’m writing with my sister soon, too! But for today, I’ll be making one for winter and Christmas, since the first day of winter was yesterday!! Like with my other aesthetics, I found all the pictures on Pixabay! Okay, here it is!

I hope you liked it! I’ll see you guys on Saturday (Christmas!)!! Hope you have an amazing day! Bye! ❀

This or That: Christmas Edition

Hello! Since it’s only ONE WEEK until Christmas, I decided to do a Christmas-y this or that! Heidi made this up, here’s hers, make sure to go check it out! Thank you for letting me do it!! Okay, well here it is!

Fake Christmas tree or real Christmas tree?

I like that real Christmas trees are really nice because it’s fun going out and finding one, and because I love the smell! But I like that fake ones are cheaper, require less work, and they don’t shed as much needles. Overall, I think that I like fake trees better.πŸŽ„

White lights or colored lights?

I like white lights better because they just look so magical!

Ugly Christmas sweater or cute Christmas sweater?

I like cute Christmas sweaters better! πŸ’–

Candy canes or gingerbread cookies?

I love both of these, but I might have to go with candy canes, because I love basically anything minty!

Star or Angel? (On top of the tree)

I love both! We have a star, but I wouldn’t mind which one we have! ⭐

Hot Chocolate or Eggnog?

I don’t think I’ve ever really had eggnog, so I guess hot chocolate!!

Wrapping Paper or Gift Bags?

Okay, so if it means which one looks nicer, I’d choose wrapping paper. But if it’s between which one I like to use better, I’d have to go with gift bags! I am horrible at wrapping gifts.

Christmas Music or Christmas Movies?

I don’t like watching movies that much, so I would probably choose music! There are a lot of good Christmas movies though!

Festive Dress or Festive Sweater?

Probably a sweater. I don’t really like wearing dresses that much.

Christmas Music Before or After Thanksgiving?

I like to wait until at least after Thanksgiving to start listening to Christmas music! πŸ˜ƒ

Decorate Before or After Thanksgiving?


Open Presents Christmas Eve or Christmas Day?

We’ve never opened them on Christmas Eve, so I’ll probably go with Christmas day!

Hot Coffee or Hot Chocolate?

I don’t like to drink coffee, so I’ll have to go with hot cocoa!! β˜•

Decorating a Gingerbread House or Cookies?

I love how gingerbread houses look, but I like to decorate cookies better! Making gingerbread houses is still fun though!!

White Elephant or Secret Santa?

Probably Secret Santa!

I hope you like this post!! Have an awesome day! I’ll see you guys in my next post on Wednesday, which will hopefully be a winter aesthetic, or a Christmas poem! Okay, have a great rest of your weekend!!

Christmas Cookies/Treats My Family’s Making This Year

Hello! I know this post is kind of late: I had a very busy day!! (A good kind of busy, though!) I hope your Saturday is going well too! In this post, I’m going to tell you guys all the cookies and treats my family is planning on making this Christmas!


This is the classic Christmas cookie! I love these, but I know there are a lot of people who don’t. I know that my little siblings mainly like cutting them out and decorating them!!


I don’t really think of these as a Christmas cookie, but my brother really wanted them, and they are good!

Rice Crispies

I absolutely LOVE these, especially if they’re homemade! So yummy!!!


I love these too! They’re one of my favorite cookies: they’re just so buttery and delicious!!


I made these a few times, and they’re really fun! I love the taste too: they kind of remind me of crunchy marshmallows like in Lucky Charm cereal! Also, you can do different colors in the piping bag, so this time, I think we’re going to do red and green! πŸ˜€

Snowball Cookies

I had these for the first time last year, and I really liked them! (By now, you’ve probably noticed I like most of these!!πŸ˜…)

Thin Mints

These were my pick! I really like the ones from the store, although I haven’t made homemade ones yet. They look pretty easy though!

Chocolate Covered Pretzels

Yum! I like that these aren’t just sweet, and that they are also crunchy!

Ritz Cookies

Like the previous cookies, I like that these are kind of salty too! But last year my sister and I made these and when we melted the chocolate and it was a mess! But they were good so…

Peppermint Bark

This isn’t one of the treats we planned on making, but it just sounds so fun and it’s really good! I hope I can make these!!!


I hope you liked this post, even though it is kind of short and simple. I can’t believe it’s only two weeks until Christmas!!

What treats are you making this year? What’s your favorite Christmas cookie? I’d love to know in the comments!! ☺

My Christmas Decorations

Hi! I’m so glad you’re reading this today, because I’m going to be showing you guys some of my Christmas decorations!!!

I did a whole bunch of decorating on Sunday, and with the help of some of my siblings, I got all of the decorations out! We still haven’t put our tree out yet, but I’ll show you some of the other decor!!! πŸŽ„

The Pictures! β­πŸŽ„β­πŸŽ„β­πŸŽ„β­πŸŽ„

On our tv stand, we have a little nativity set and a little kit that made this display with the houses, which my siblings and I drew and painted last year!

Then, on one of the windowsills, we have a few little Christmas trees, and a little snowman, which my sister set up!
On our school table, we have a bigger nativity scene and a little Christmas tree! My little siblings arranged all the little animals inside, and we always wait until Christmas or Christmas Eve to but baby Jesus in the manger!
Here’s a better picture of the nativity scene!
Over our chalkboard, we have a big festive bow!
I know that it might be kind of hard to tell what it is, but it’s a kind of twine with tiny Christmas tree clothespins on them. We’re going to put all of out Christmas cards on them!
On another windowsill, we have a whole bunch of little wooden Christmas trees, as well as a small nativity set!
On our table, we have yet another nativity scene, this one with just white glass pieces! We also put an angel back there, and that clear Christmas tree on the right!
Then, I have this sign hanging on my door! I love the blue colors!!
In my room, at the corner of my collage, I have one of my little Christmas tree ornament decorations!
I even have this little Christmas bear on my shelf!
This isn’t really a decoration, but I wanted to share this little calendar I made with you guys! One night, I was just bored and started to make this! (I know it’s not the neatest, I didn’t have a ruler or anything!)

πŸŽ„ πŸŽ„ πŸŽ„ πŸŽ„ πŸŽ„

Okay, well that’s all! I can’t believe it’s less than three weeks until Christmas! I hope we can get our tree up soon!

I hope you are having a good day, and I’ll see you on Saturday!!! Byeee!



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