Be It Ever So Humble Playlist

Have you ever noticed that certain songs can take you back to a particular place or time in your life the instant they begin to play? For me, it goes even further than that. Certain songs become stories in my head—to the point that every time I hear those particular songs, I remember the stories they inspired.

So I thought it would be fun to create a playlist of songs to pair with the chapters of Be It Ever So Humble. Some of these songs convey the exact feelings the characters are having during a given scene, and some convey a general emotional theme. I’ve broken down which songs fit which chapters below, and at the bottom, you can listen to the playlist yourself!


  1. MAKE OVER by Christina Aguliera [Explicit]
  2. FAMILY IS FAMILY by Kacey Musgraves
  3. HOME SWEET HOME by Mötley Crüe
  4. HIGH HORSE by Kacey Musgraves
  5. BYE BYE BYE by *N Sync
  6. WORKIN’ FOR A LIVIN’ by Garth Brooks and Huey Lewis & The News *
  7. YOU BELONG WITH ME by Taylor Swift
  8. WRECKING BALL by Miley Cyrus
  9. UPSIDE DOWN by Jack Johnson
  10. GOLDEN GIRLS THEME SONG (THANK YOU FOR BEING A FRIEND) by Bobby Bones and the Raging Idiots
  11. RUNAWAY BABY by Bruno Mars
  12. BETTER TOGETHER by Luke Combs
  13. DYING IN LA by Panic! At the Disco
  14. YOU DON’T KNOW HOW IT FEELS by Tom Petty
  15. CRY PRETTY by Carrie Underwood
  16. TORN by Natalie Imbruglia
  17. STRONG ENOUGH by Sheryl Crow
  18. TAKE IT EASY by Eagles
  19. DREAM A LITTLE DREAM OF ME by The Mamas & The Papas
  20. I’M YOURS by Jason Mraz
  21. STRAWBERRY WINE by Deana Carter
  22. ZERO TO SIXTY by Rachel Potter / THERE’S NO HOME FOR YOU HERE by The White Stripes
  23. JUST FRIENDS by Caylee Hammack
  24. BREATHE by by Greenwheel
  26. BECAUSE OF YOU by Kelly Clarkson
  27. JADED by Aerosmith
  28. WOMAN by Kesha (feat. The Dap-Kings Horns) [Explicit] / STARTING OVER by Chris Stapleton

*I prefer the duet version with Garth Brooks for this, but it isn’t available on Spotify. You can find it on Amazon Music Unlimited, though, if you want to create your own playlist there.

Check out the playlist on Spotify!

If you’ve read Be It Ever So Humble, how’d I do? Any songs you think should be added to the playlist?

Meet Luna!

Now that you’ve met Moondoggie, it’s time for Luna’s introduction!

This is Luna:

We got her from a rescue, too, when she was two months old. We’ve had her since she was just a rolly -polly. I could carry her in one hand. We were told she’s a Boxer/Aussie mix, but we’re not sure about that. She’s not even thirty pounds full grown. She might have some of both breeds in her, but I think her parents must have been mixes as well. We could get a DNA test, but we’re not THAT concerned. She’s just our sweet little whatever-she-is, and that’s fine by us.

Luna has the prettiest eyes. One is brown, and one is blue. On the brown eye, she has black eyelashes and a permanent winged eyeliner look. On the blue eye, she has white eyelashes and more of a tight-lined eyeliner look. She has an unusual amount of squish for a dog. You can literally pull her skin away from her body. It’s like she never grew into it. She has tons of freckles, and her hair swirls into itself to look like a hurricane in the center of her chest.

I would describe her personality as sweet, timid, and loving. Luna loves cuddles and to be pet on the chest (but she doesn’t love to be pet where she’s extra squishy). If you’re near her and not petting her, she’ll paw at you until you do. If you stop, she’ll paw at you again. One of her funniest qualities is that she talks. She talks to us in the morning when we wake up, she talks to us when she wants something, and she talks to us when she is displeased in any way. I wish I could give an accurate description of the sound. It’s something between a bark and a growl, and it is absolutely adorable. She enjoys watching TV. So far, her favorites have been Penny DreadfulHamilton, and the “live-action” version of The Lion King. She loves the idea of car rides but doesn’t like having to sit in the back seat away from her humans.

Her tricks include:

  • Sit
  • Fives
  • Boops/Kisses

She’s scared of pooping (seriously, I’ve never seen a dog so afraid of her own poop), people in hats, distant motorcycles, playing hide and seek… She’s afraid of everything, really. When she does something bad, she lets us know/apologizes by sitting on the couch, looking extra pathetic and guilty. And it works every time.

Her favorite game is catch. She’s really good at catching a ball in the air, and I think she gets a thrill out of it because it’s something she’s good at and Moondoggie struggles with. Maybe I’m projecting a bit too much humanity onto my dogs here, but that’s how it seems! She also loves to play while I’m exercising. It never fails. The moment I get out my mat, she gets out a toy. It’s been especially cute lately because she has a (now half-eaten) dumbbell toy that she always gets out when I’ve got my dumbbells out.

She is also known as:

  • Luna Mae (her full name)
  • Roona Roo (like Scooby Doo)
  • Baby Girl

So, there you have it. This was part two of my too-in-depth discussion about my dogs, but I’m hoping you stuck with it because you love the strange idiosyncrasies of pets as much as I do!

Meet Moondoggie!

Since my dogs are my babies, I’ll probably feature them on my blog often. Figured I’d give them a proper introduction.

This is Moondoggie:

We got him from a rescue when he was about five months old. They told us he’s a Chihuahua/Terrier mix, and I’m inclined to believe that since he has physical and personality traits of both breeds.

His ears were too big for his body when we first adopted him, but he has grown into them. One of them typically flops over while the other stands at attention. It’s funny to me because I was in a production of the musical Urinetown (a great show, check it out if you can), and my prop bunny had the same ears! Moondoggie has tiny Dr. Seuss feet that smell like corn chips, and a white spot on his chest that’s always cold. He has the cutest mop of bleach-blonde hair on top of his head, and we like to let that grow out so we can style it. His hair grows extremely fast. A friend once told me she loved how he always looks a little homeless. We have been trying to groom him ourselves this year, and it’s getting better with each attempt. He has dog allergies. I didn’t know that was a thing. Unfortunately, because they can get pretty bad and irritate his bronchial tubes, he is more susceptible to illness than some dogs. Because of this, we’re supposed to keep his exposure to other places/dogs to a minimum when possible.

I would describe his personality as a cranky old man. He’s very smart, and he gets impatient when he wants something and feels ignored (don’t we all?).  He’s also very aware of everything going on at all times. His likes include making loud noises (his bark is exceptionally ear-piercing), chilling in his self-made pillow/shark forts (we’re not sure how he does it), getting massages and ear rubs, and doing tricks for treats or for attention.

His tricks include:

  • Sit
  • Stay
  • Come
  • Lay down
  • Roll over
  • Fives
  • Boops/Kisses (he also gives these as a “treat” when his humans do his bidding)

His dislikes include car rides, watching his humans pack for a trip, and attention. He’s very particular about what kind of attention he gets, and he only wants it on his terms. He’s afraid of loud noises (ironic since he loves to make them), the oven when it’s on, and the vacuum cleaner (on or off).

His favorite game is Hide & Seek. We tell him to stay, and then we hide somewhere and call for him. He would play this all day if we could. Tied for second place in the games category would be keep away and chasing the Swiffer.

He is also known as:

  • Moondoggie Jax (his full name)
  • Moonie
  • Moondog
  • Mr. Sweet Face (any Jane the Virgin fans?)
  • Mr. Mooney Head (derived from a long story about something I misheard in the song Lady Marmalade)

Clearly, I love my dogs. This is my longest post yet, and I haven’t even gotten to Luna! I’ll feature her in the next post. In the meantime, let’s talk pets! Do you have any pets? What kind of wacky things do they get up to?

It’s International Literacy Day!

What better way to celebrate than to talk about books?

The adorable dog model is Luna. And yes, that’s a Disneyland throw covering our couch (and a Disney World throw covering the other cushion). We have a *slight* Disney obsession in our house.

My last read was Home Work by Julie Andrews and her daughter, Emma Walton Hamilton. This is a sequel to her first memoir, Home.  Both are definite must-reads for Julie fans. Home Work is specifically dedicated to her Hollywood years, and it seems to be the preferred book amongst fans. I, personally, love both equally. It’s so nice to know that the singer/actress I grew up admiring is also a very admirable human being! I own both of these books in audio format as well. I love listening to Julie Andrews read them. It’s like story time with Nana Julie! As threatened in my introduction post, one of these days I’ll devote a whole blog post to Julie Andrews. It’ll probably be a review of her books and of her speaking engagement I got to attend last year. It was an absolute dream come true!

My current read is Midnight Sun by Stephenie Meyer. The Twilight series is such a guilty pleasure of mine, and I’m so glad this was finally published. Wes has been reading this to me (I know, we’re disgusting) since self-publishing a book means that by the end of the day I am done looking at words. We only get through about a chapter a night, and we’re finally almost to the meadow scene! So far I’m enjoying getting more insight into the mind and actions of Edward and getting more insight into the Cullen clan as a whole. I’m tempted to reread all of the Twilight novels after, but…

My next read will probably be Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton. It’s Wes’s all-time favorite book/movie/fandom/toys/everything, and it only seems fair that we reread it after I’ve forced him to endure the melodramatic thoughts of a teenage vampire. I love Jurassic Park, too, so it’s not like it’s a sacrifice on my part. We recently read The Evolution of Claire—a Jurassic World prequel novel about Claire in her intern years. Loved that one, too!

How about you? What have you read recently? What are you reading? What are you planning to read?

An Introduction

Thought I should introduce myself properly.

How heavy is a polar bear? Heavy enough to break the ice. Hi, I’m Jen. 

If you ever need an ice breaker, that one works every time. And by “works every time,” I mean people find it mildly amusing and awkward—words that also sum up my sense of humor.

I love coffee and chocolate, classic (especially Jane Austen) and YA novels.

I dislike automatic toilets, white chocolate (it’s not even chocolate!), and crowds.

I’ve lived in a handful of places including Missouri, Indiana, and Florida. One of my favorites was California, specifically Los Angeles. Although I was only there for about a year and a half, I have many fond memories of living there. The history of filmmaking intrigues me, and I love watching old movies. My favorite person is Julie Andrews. I’ll probably dedicate a whole blog post to her. 

My real favorite person is my husband, Wes. He’s an amazingly talented artist, designer, and tailor. We often attend Dapper Day at Walt Disney World and enjoy coming up with Disney character inspired retro fashion. It’s our version of cosplay. I’ll probably dedicate multiple blog posts to our Dapper Day projects.

This picture is from back when we did things. I’m a germaphobe and hypochondriac, so you can imagine how 2020 is going for us. By the way, isn’t he handsome?

Pictured below are our wacky dogs, Moondoggie and Luna. They have very different personalities. Do you remember Pinky and the Brain? Luna is Pinky; Moondoggie is the Brain. Don’t remember Pinky and the Brain? Moondoggie is smart. Too smart. Luna is a lovebug. She’s not as smart. They were both rescues, so we don’t know for sure what breeds they are. We were told Moondoggie is probably a Chihuahua/Terrier mix. Luna is probably a Boxer/Aussie mix. She’s not even thirty pounds, though, so who knows, really.

I’m sure I’ll post pictures of them often. Although, I probably won’t be in those pictures since they don’t like to pose. They’re more into candid photos. Here’s picture proof that they like each other sometimes.

I could go on, but I don’t want to turn this post into a novel. 

How about you? What are some of your likes and dislikes? Introduce yourself in the comments. Let’s chat!