Wednesday, April 29, 2015

JaToya Reviews: Sarah Dessen, Dreamland

Ever since she started going out with Rogerson Biscoe, Caitlin seems to have fallen into a semiconscious dreamland where nothing is quite real. Rogerson is different from anyone Caitlin has ever known. He's magnetic. He's compelling. He's dangerous. Being with him makes Caitlin forget about everything else--her missing sister, her withdrawn mother, her lackluster life. But what happens when being with Rogerson becomes a larger problem than being without him?

summary and image from goodreads

My Review:
I have read almost all of Sarah Dessen's books and this one stands out as one of my favorites. When I read it, I couldn't put it down and I basically finished it in one day. It captivated me, but it also got me thinking which is the perfect formula for a book in my opinion. I also had mixed emotions. Although Rogerson was a bad guy (whom I had zero respect for) the way Sarah Dessen portrayed him was brilliant. I was left sort of wanting the best for him even though he was extremely flawed. I almost even felt sorry for him in a way that left me conflicted. I don't agree with what he did and how he reacted to situations, but he was written in a way that I could see his point of view. Caitlin was an amazing character as well who represents so many girls and women. She was broken and vulnerable and she made the story relatable. I might have never gone through the things she did exactly but there have been times in my life where I have felt vulnerable. The supporting characters also made this story and provided much needed comic relief because they were quirky. The book did however start off slow, but once I got into it, it picked up. It's a good one that I highly recommend if you're looking for something that's not just your typical teen romance. There's more depth to this story. It gets you thinking and feeling, it's a must read.

Sunday, April 26, 2015


Happy Birthday to me! It's my 23rd birthday and it really doesn't even feel like it. I don't feel 23. I don't feel like I'm ready to be 23, but I am. I'm not big on making wishes on my birthday, but I've been thinking and there's really only one thing I want this year. I want to start living instead of existing. For me that means stop going through the motions because that's how I've been living my life lately. I want to enjoy every moment of my life. The good, the bad, the ugly, and the in between. I want to truly live! In honor of my birthday I want to share a few nuggets of wisdom that I'm striving to live by this year!

1. Happiness really is a choice.
2. Never compare yourself to others.
3. Enjoy the journey.
4. It's okay to not have it all figured out.
5. Love yourself first.
6. Whatever is meant to be yours, you will have.
7. Don't rush, slow down.
8. Always be happy for others when they win.
9. Let that shit go.
10. Always have a good heart, even when others don't.

Oh, and Happy Birthday to all my April babies out there! We really are the best!

Friday, April 24, 2015

23 thoughts on turning 23

1. I'm 23, I can't believe it.
2. I still feel like a teenager.
3. I'm not ready.
4. Okay, I'm ready.
5. Actually I'm not ready.
6. I'm old.
7. My life isn't anything like I imagined.
8. I still live at home, oh my God (don't judge).
9. I need to find out what I want to do with my life, stat.
10. I'm still not ready.
11. Maybe being an adult will be fun.
12. Still figuring things out over here.
13. Can time just slow down?
14. I got this.
15. I still act like a child (only sometimes).
16. Honestly, where did the time go?
17. Feeling lonely sometimes is normal right?
18. I'm trying my best not to become exactly like my mother. At least not yet.
19. It's never too late.
20. Gotta start working out like yesterday.
21. I'm making a big deal out of this aren't I?
22. I think everything's going to be okay.
23. I'm ready!

Thursday, April 23, 2015

23 lessons

My 23rd birthday is this Sunday and it really got me thinking. I'm still young but I feel like I've gained so much wisdom and I'm still learning. I thought it would be cool (um???) to share 23 things I've learned and that I would tell my overly dramatic, stressed out teenage self.

1. Don't worry, it's all going to be okay.
2. Never settle.
3. You are enough.
4. Three words. Life. Goes. On.
5. Forgiveness is for you, not them.
6. Never make a mountain out of a molehill.
7. Relax.
8. No matter what, always be happy.
9. Gratitude is everything.
10. You are never alone.
11. Work hard, always.
12. Don't let what people think or say phase you.
13. You and only you are in control of your life.
14. Your fear should never be bigger than your faith.
15. Your value isn't dependent on what other people think.
16. Never let them see you sweat.
17. Sometimes (most of the time) it's never that serious.
18. You thought you could never get over him, well you can and you did.
19. Love unconditionally and with your whole heart.
20. Life is a gift. Treat it as such.
22. You are beautiful.
23. Attitude is everything.

What are some things you have learned and that you would tell your younger self if you could?

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

23 things I want to do

1. Be more positive.
2. Complain less.
3. Fall in love.
4. Find my passion.
5. Feel more confident.
6. Be happy even in the hard times.
7. Worry less.
8. Say what I feel.
9. Live and love without limits.
10. Work harder.
11. Laugh more often.
12. Never hold back.
13. Know that it's okay to cry sometimes.
14. Be more creative.
15. Take better care of myself.
16. Write more.
17. Sing more.
18. Be myself.
19. Have more faith and less fear.
20. Spend less time on the internet.
21. Create lasting memories.
22. Be successful on my own terms.
23. Make myself proud.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Birthday Week

It's my birthday week. I can't even believe it's already the end of April. Where has the time gone? Anyhow, in honor of this occasion, I'm going to be doing birthday themed posts all week. It's going to kind of be deep simply because this year I want to start living my life in a more meaningful way. I'm going to be 23 (yikes) and I'm growing and becoming a woman (yikes again); I want my blog to reflect that. I've been doing a lot of thinking and writing so I can't wait to share my thoughts with you. I hope you all enjoy!

See you tomorrow!

Monday, April 20, 2015

I'm back...for real this time

Welcome back to The JaToya Chronicles! Let's just pretend I never left shall we? I've been feeling super inspired lately and to be honest I missed my blog. I didn't miss the way it used to be, but I missed having a creative outlet and I missed what could have been. Dramatic much, but it's the truth. That being said, I'm back (I think). I definitely do not want to make any promises seeing as that went so well last time (ha), but I'm for sure going to make more of an effort because let's face it, I can never stay away for too long. I am in the process (and I just said that in a british accent, not sure why) of changing things up. Most of the changes have to do with my content because I want to do things that are more me, even if I'm still figuring out who I am. I'm still working things out but I should be posting a few days this week *fingers crossed*. Next week should be more regular, but we're going to take things real slow, like real real slow. See you guys tomorrow!

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