"If we ever forget that we're one nation under God, then we will be a nation gone under." - Ronald Reagan

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Teaser Tuesday: Wildefire

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
  • Grab your current read.
  • Open to a random page.
  • Share two (2) "teaser" sentences from somewhere on that page.
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (Make sure that what you share doesn't give away too much. You don't want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title and author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teaser!
I found this book on Amazon as I was looking for something new. The cover is absolutely gorgeous so I kept reading. The premise piqued my interest: teenagers at a distant boarding school discover that their enrollment is no coincidence; they are reincarnations of long-lost demi-gods. Included with the description was an interesting interview with the author. Karsten Knight was funny. If his writing was as compelling as his personality, then this book would be a good read.

Here's the Teaser:
"Her most stunning feature was her eyes, two irises of vibrant gray that gave her a commanding presence despite her diminutive stature.
It was thus all the more ironic that Serena Andreotes was completely blind."
- pg 69, Wildefire by Karsten Knight
What are you reading?

Friday, August 26, 2011

Friday Confessional: Back to School

So…seems like I've only been posting lately when there's a meme to fill out or some other obligation. Hence, the "first day of school" post. Sure, we celebrated and it was a big deal and I've been admiring everyone else's adorable, backpack-bearing children and my blog has remained silent…except for the memes. Yeah, well…maybe I need to adjust my happy pills.



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I confess…
I was really looking forward to the day when school started.

I confess…
I may have counted down the days. Just a little. Especially when the advertising, sales, and stacks of notebooks started showing up everywhere. Then came the planning for the annual party at the bus stop, where the families all meet together early, bringing juice and frosted carbs to celebrate the start of another year, before loading our offspring on a large, awkward metal conveyance that lack proper restraints.

I confess…
When Boo started school, I cried a little as she climbed on that bus, her tiny legs barely able to make it up the stairs. Then I cried a little bit more back at home, when she wasn't there for what seemed like a very, very long time. I fought the tears when she came home, tired but happy. Even laying out her clothes for the next day got me a little weepy.


I confess…
Boy's first day was met with much more enthusiasm. This change wasn't because the Boy was a difficult child; he's a pretty typical boy. Mainly, I was excited because he was so excited to hop on that bus. Finally, all those mornings spent with his nose pressed to the window, watching his sister make the long walk (half a block) to wait for the bus. He probably didn't sleep much the night before. Also? It's not nearly as scary the second time around.


I confess…
When Baby starts school, I will probably be a jiggly mess of sobbing and snot. It won't be pretty, folks.



I confess…


*sigh*
I love my little family. We are very blessed. And the best part? Is how much they love each other back. I'm not the only one that's addicted to the hugs and sloppy kisses.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

I Love the Smell of Swapping in the Evening

I was starting to go into withdrawal…


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Head on over and sign up for this one! Mamarazzi is a fantastic hostess! (Tell her I sent ya.)

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Wordful Wednesday: When Zombies Attack Young Couples

It's no secret that I anticipate a zombie apocalypse…possibly starting around late December 2012. Or not. And I'm not the only one.

A young couple, hopelessly in love, takes a trip to a more rural and rustic part of the country to capture those stylish engagement photos with forgotten backdrops. You know the scene: overgrown fields of wheat, abandoned buildings, rusted farm equipment. What they should have asked was why those places were abandoned in the first place…

I can't do it justice and I'd rather not "borrow" someone else's work, so go on over to Amanda Rynda's photography site and take a look through her most recent photo shoot! Makes me want to do mine all over again.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Teaser Tuesday: Gathering Blue

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
  • Grab your current read.
  • Open to a random page.
  • Share two (2) "teaser" sentences from somewhere on that page.
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (Make sure that what you share doesn't give away too much. You don't want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title and author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teaser!

I'm finally off the anthologies. A long time ago, I read Lois Lowry's The Giver, a jarring dystopian story about what our world could become if we let someone else make all of our decisions for the sake of equality. Most people I've talked to, read the book in high school so they spent weeks analyzing every chapter and writing papers so they don't necessarily have a positive perspective. I didn't read it then and I was itching to rant calmly share my thoughts. Even made my parents read it so I'd have someone else to discuss the book with. When I read that the author had written two more books along the same lines, I immediately added them to my TBR list. Gathering Blue is the second book and, so far, almost completely different than the first one. In fact, I'm not sure how they tie together. Kira is a young girl, disabled from birth but with a surprising talent for needlework, that suddenly becomes orphan and must prove herself valuable to the primitive community, where everyone contributes for the greater good.


Here's the Teaser:
" 'One day my daughter will be able to do this.' Katrina had said one year to the guardian. 'Look what she has done!' she said and showed him the scrap the Kira had just completed, the one that had composed itself so magically in her fingers."
- pg 42, Gathering Blue by Lois Lowry
What are you reading?

Thursday, August 18, 2011

My Summer Survival Secret: Nutella

I love me a good recipe. On a weekly basis, I am subjecting the family to new experiments. For the most part, they turn out well enough and some are even added to permanent rotation. Then there are the miserable failures that have us scraping off our plates and snacking on grapes and crackers the rest of the evening.

It's far too hard to be flawless all the time. Really, I need to lower the expectations every now and then or there's just no way I can keep up with the demands.

So it was very unfortunately that I came across perfection in baked form. I'll never be able to top this one. Self-Frosting Nutella Cupcakes.


 Be Different…Act Normal was the first to mention these extraordinary beauties. Lorie has never steered me wrong in the past and these might just be my new favorite. And usually, frosting the cupcake is my favorite part but with these, it's sinking my teeth into a the next one that sends me over the moon.

When I moved to Happy Valley, the local grocery store did not carry any delicious chocolate hazelnut spread. The store manager was open to special requests so I made one. On my most recent visit, there were three spaces on the shelf dedicated to Nutella. Now, previously, my favorite form of Nutella was by the spoonful straight from the jar while making dinner, after the kids have gone to bed, or when there's fighting coming from the other room and I need to solidify my resolve to confront it.

After I make my next batch of these cupcakes, I'll have enough proofs of purchase for the spiffy Nutella Spreader.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Teaser Tuesday: Dark & Stormy Knights

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
  • Grab your current read.
  • Open to a random page.
  • Share two (2) "teaser" sentences from somewhere on that page.
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (Make sure that what you share doesn't give away too much. You don't want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title and author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teaser!

Still loving the anthologies. I've had this one on my wish list for some time. I'm beginning to think that Border's going out of business is the best thing that's ever happened to my bookshelf. This one, called Dark and Stormy Knights, is a collection of short stories where the hero/heroine doesn't fit the stereotype. So no Fabio look-a-likes riding in on a snow white steed to save the day. Instead, you've got the shady vampire who agreed to help only because it means vengeance, a mean old dragonslayer training a replacement before her forced retirement, the "gentleman mobster" from the Dresden Files taking a stand, and a man who was born to kill people with the ability to call forth demon-like creatures, regardless of their gender or age. So far, some really interesting stories...and a couple that I had a hard time getting into

Here's the Teaser:
"He said he couldn't fault me for keeping her to myself, describing her as a darlin' little thing with dark hair. That's all the detail I got, and I couldn't ask for more or I'd have to tell him she was a ghost, and that was none of his business."
- pg 201, "The Dark Lady" by P.N. Elrod, Dark and Stormy Knights, edited by P.N. Elrod

What book are you reading?

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Wordful Wednesday: Sunday Hairstyles

* It's "WordFUL Wednesday" because I don't think it's possible for me to not talk. 

At times, I really feel like a failure as a mother. Pretty much on a weekly basis, actually. Already, my kids are doomed when it comes to wearing cool clothes. Or shoes. And their mom is a big dork that reads mostly dork books. I also tend to forget my shortcomings and attempt something ridiculously out of my range...like giving the girls cute hairstyles for church on Sunday.

After watching a tutorial on how to get heat-free curls, I decided this would be perfect for Boo and Baby (and Boo's American Girl doll, too, apparently).


The process itself is fairly simple and the girls actually sat still long enough for me to finish that twisting. I sent them off to bed with giggles and careful pats at their "crowns."

Doll hair just doesn't curl well so I wasn't too surprised when that venture wasn't successful. Baby's hair was gorgeous. Those lovely curls were effortless. Unfortunately, half of her hair had slipped from bondage during the night. As long as you looked at her from the right...

Boo's curls were soft and sweet. We rushed to church (because we always do) and I didn't get a picture. As she walked down the hall to her Sunday School class, I noticed the curls were somewhat less...curvy. By the time church was over, she hair was barely wavy.

*Sigh*

Well, at least I tried.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Teaser Tuesday: My Big Fat Supernatural Wedding

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
  • Grab your current read.
  • Open to a random page.
  • Share two (2) "teaser" sentences from somewhere on that page.
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (Make sure that what you share doesn't give away too much. You don't want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teaser!


I missed doing this the past couple weeks, mainly because I forgot it was Tuesday was in between books. But this week, I am ready to go! For some reason, I've gotten into reading collections of short stories featuring some of my favorite authors. This book was the latest in that trend. My Big Fat Supernatural Wedding has tales of nuptial chaos from big names like Jim Butcher, Charlaine Harris, and P.N. Elrod . There are tales zombie pirates on a wedding cruise, spell-casting relatives attempting to deter young love, a vampire marrying a werewolf, and a mythic goddess bringing the wedding ceremony to an ethereal halt. I got it for the Jim Butcher story but I think I might check into some of Esther Friesner and Susan Krinard books because I thought their contributions were pretty good. Actually, the teaser is from Ms. Friesner's tale.

Here's the Teaser:
"Although the tranquil surface of a pond reflects the silver beauty of the moon, that is no guarantee against it teeming with alligators. A smattering of caution would determine whether you came away from the encounter with a haiku or a bloody stump where your right hand used to be."
- pg 158, "The Wedding of Wylda Serene" by Esther M. Friesner, My Big Fat Supernatural Wedding, edited by P.N. Elrod

What book are you reading?

Monday, August 8, 2011

Don't Step On My Cerulean-Hued, Non-Animal Skin Shoes!

Source

I've already admitted my utter lack of skill in the fashion department, especially when it comes to shoes. Nearly two years later, I haven't changed (although I now own a pair of adorable red heels!). Currently, I am on pair #6 of the same utilitarian black loafers because I wear them with everything. I'd rather stick with what works because by the time I join in on a trend, it's usually long over.

Honest, I really tried to care about shoes! I spent far too much money on an adorable pair of embroidered shoes that I had coveted (yes, coveted, as in "committing the sin of envy") for months. And? I've never worn them. I have a different pair of shoes that are nearly the same color that I opt for instead. Why? No idea. Maybe because the uglier shoes would give me better traction in case I have to run from zombies.

Then, in preparation for my cruise (which I never blogged about because I am a total slacker), I got two new pairs of shoes. Both are open-toed wedges, which I picked because I wanted heels ('cuz I'm short) but didn't want to wear stilettos on the beach. "Stuck" is not a good look. Now, the black pair has become my go-to shoe, taking the place of my trusty loafers. They are higher heels than I usually wear but they're just fun to walk in. I don't trip over my feet or stumble nearly as often as I do in heels. And? Random strangers give me compliments on them. For a chubby white lady who usually has had a kid smear something on her clothes which she then wears out in public because she hasn't noticed, compliments are pretty scarce.

So I stroll along, completing my errands in my cute shoes. I usually don't notice how much my feet hurt until I've been sitting down for a moment (a rare event with three kids to entertain during the summers months). But boy howdy, the shoes turn from pretty to painful after a couple hours. I tried inserts from Dr Scholl's but they won't stick to the shoes and keep flopping out. I found one in my daughter's doll house, being used as a carpet. I've decided that limping really takes the swing out of my swagger.

Also? There should be a law against gorgeous, tall, slim women being allowed to wear sky-high heels around us short, frumpy types. Even my Super Sexy Goddess boots just can't compare.

Friday, August 5, 2011

A Mothering Moment: Packing

As a mother with growing children, you might be tempted to give your brood tasks in which they are entirely responsible - with very little checking on your part -  so those little people will learn about consequences.

This is not a good idea.

Carefully explain that the trip will last three days so your (highly intelligent, possibly genius) child will need three sets of clothes including: pants, shirt, underwear, and socks. Let him/her happily gather items and stash them in their own backpack. Then, send them on to another important task. But check the bag! Otherwise, this could be the scene in your hotel on the second day of your trip:

The Man: Boy, you really need to put on clean socks.
Boy: But I only have one clean sock.
The Man: Wait, what?
Boy: Mom said to bring three socks. I wore two yesterday so I only have one left.
The Man: Three pairs of socks.
Boy: Oh...that makes more sense.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Move Over, Twilight!

Have you read "The Hunger Games" trilogy by Suzanne Collins? Not only is the writing of higher quality than the Twilight Saga, but the love triangle is a lot more believable. And no one sparkles. I even convinced the Man to read it! I can't get him to sit through an entire Twilight movie.

Rumors of the upcoming Hunger Games movie have had me going spastic like nothing else. I highly approve of the selected cast (except how hard would it be to have Peeta be blond? Really, give the boy some bleach and be done with it!). Also, does anyone know if Lenny Kravitz can actually act?

In my quest to find more tidbits of tribute goodness, I found this youtube yumminess:



(And since all my video frames get cut off, go here to see the un-squished version.)

I've been a Peeta fan since book one. Not just because he can bake, either. The guy is sweet! Who wouldn't swoon for someone who has been secretly in love with you since you were in pigtails?

Which one would you choose: Peeta or Gale?

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