Saturday, March 30, 2013

TuesBookTalk April Selection: Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier


TuesBookTalk Read-a-Longs on Twitter (@tuesbooktalk  #tuesbooktalk) and on Goodreads will be reading the classic title, Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier, in April. Our first discussion will be on Tuesday, April 2.  Our chats take place on Twitter at 9:30pm ET/8:30pm CT on Tuesday nights (see hashtag above).  If you can't join us on Twitter, feel free to share your thoughts in the Goodreads group.  Get the full reading schedule HERE.  Hope you will join us!

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Thursday, March 28, 2013

Cat Thursday: Nab all the cats



Welcome to the weekly meme that celebrates the wonders and sometime hilarity of cats! Join us by posting a favorite LOL cat pic you may have come across, famous cat art or even share with us pics of your own beloved cat(s). It's all for the love of cats! Enjoy! (share your post in the Mr. Linky below)

How to get all the cats. Brilliant!


credit:  lolcats
Here are a couple recent shots of the girls...


Arya

Alice
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Monday, March 25, 2013

A Reading Life--March is almost in the history books



This feature was inspired by It's Monday! What are you reading? hosted by Sheila at Book Journey and also by The Sunday Salon.

Listening To:  Still listening to The Stand on audio, but not much because I haven't been driving and when the kids are in the car, they don't really want to listen to my audio book. LOL! I did find one of my old burned CDs with some great tracks on it by Matthew Sweet, Beck, Soul Coughing, and Muse. We were listening to that yesterday on our way to the movies.

Book finished: I'm almost finished with The Remains of the Day.

Reading: Crime and Punishment by Feodor Dostoyevsky, Cold Comfort Farm by Stella Gibbons, Little Women, The Arrow Chest by Robert Parry.

What I have left to read this month...I need to at least finish Cold Comfort Farm. It's my Classics Club Spin read.

Coming Up Next:  Wildish by Robert Parry, Flesh by Khanh Ha for a book tour/review in early April, Silk Road by Colin Falconer and I have a list of books for Once Upon a Time VII that I can choose from. Plus, our TuesBookTalk read for April which we're still voting on, but it's looking like it's going to be Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier.

Watching:  Went to the $2 discount theater again this weekend. Mom, the boys and I saw Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters. It was pretty good. I love Jeremy Renner. The real surprise was Beautiful Creatures, which I saw on Sunday with my mom and my aunt. I thought it was pretty good too. A lot better than I expected, that's for sure. I love the actor who played Ethan. He is too cute! On TV, last night was the second to last episode of Walking Dead before the season finale next week. What a revelation! I don't know if I can wait until Fall for it to come back. Ugh! Tonight is the premiere of The Voice with new judges Shakira (love her) and Usher. I don't usually watch it in the very beginning because the blind auditions tend to drag on, but I may pop over and check out snippets. Also, tonight is Bates Motel and Revolution finally returns! Oh, and I have to mention something I was talking about on Facebook earlier. I've been watching Vikings and The Bible on The History Channel and liking them both, although I have to admit that I think Vikings is a better made and acted series. However, the actor who portrays Jesus in The Bible...Portuguese actor, Diogo Morgado...is a hottie. Yes, I said it...Jesus is hot! LOL!

Making:  Made something called Coney Island burgers last weekend. Ground beef mixed with diced onion, pickle relish and barbecue sauce and shape into hot dog shape. Well, they fell apart so I ended up just cooking it kind of like low sauce sloppy joes. We ate it on hot dogs buns with mustard and it was quite yummy. I also made zucchini fritters. Shredded zucchini with shredded carrots mixed with flour and butter for breading and deep fried. Eat with ketchup. Absolutely delicious!

Grateful for:  I'm having a particularly bad night so it's hard to think of what I'm grateful for. So, I'm grateful to be alive and healthy and I'm glad that my sons are healthy. How's that? Tomorrow will be a better day. *fingers crossed*

Looking forward to:  I know I said a couple of weeks ago that I was looking forward to the boys' Spring break. Well, now I'm looking forward to them going back to school next week. It's even more difficult now that we're living with my mom because I have to consider her feelings too and we just have different parenting styles. I guess that's true for a lot of people.

Picture:  Grumpy cat doesn't even like Anderson Cooper...


No Mailbox Monday this week.

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Bloggiesta--My Starting Line and Updates

This is a sticky post. Please scroll down for newer content. Thanks!



Bloggiesta
Hosted by Suey and Danielle at the Bloggiesta blog on March 22, 23, and 24.

Time to work on perfecting our blogs and other blog related tasks...and to connect as a community.


Wrap-Up
Well, didn't get everything on my list done, but actually accomplished quite a bit. Not too bad. I'm happy about it. =O)  Everything I worked on/completed is in the list directly below.

I'm a bit late doing my starting post and I've already been working on a few things. Woot! I'll list my completed tasks first:

  • New header and background for the Seasons of Reading blog--done
  • move Google Reader feeds over to Bloglovin' and I have to say I'm very happy with it--done
  • sign up for/do posts for Once Upon a Time VII and Spring Reading Thing--done
  • mini-challenges completed:  The Picky Girl--Feed Readers
  • Update reading challenge stats on my challenge blog--partially done
  • created a spreadsheet for my books reviewed/books to be reviewed--partially complete
  • posted the 1001 books widget on this blog and challenge blog--done
What I'm still hoping to work on:
  • Update reading challenge stats on my challenge blog
  • Update my books read tabs/pages
  • make a review spreadsheet that I can post in a tab/page on the blog
  • post sign ups for the Spring into Horror Read-a-Thon in April
  • decide on dates and post sign ups for Sit Down and Write 3
  • reconfigure my 101 Fantasy Reading Challenge and post about it
  • post the 1001 books widget that Heather shared with me on my blogs
  • see if there are any mini-challenges I'd like to do
  • try to join in on at least one Twitter chat


I will mark things as done as I go along. Ole!

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Friday, March 22, 2013

My New Glasses! {A Firmoo Review}


Firmoo is a new global online optical store. They offer a wide assortment of prescription eyeglasses, as well as prescription sunglasses and specialty eyewear. They even offer a Virtual Try-On System. You can even try on with your own photos. 98% of our customers have found their perfect match glasses this way. I used their try-on system when I was shopping and it worked great!

Here I am wearing my new glasses...


The glasses I chose were model #CP6074. They are a unisex frame with a cool black and white design on the inside of the frame temples, or "arms." They are a lightweight plastic with a 1.50 single vision lens. Here is an image of my glasses from the Firmoo site. Nice, huh!? You can also see several views from different vantage points by clicking HERE.

Firmoo also has a first pair free program. You can read all about it here:  http://www.firmoo.com/free-glasses.html

My video review:



I really LOVE my new glasses! I will definitely order from them again in the future. I mean, with prices as low as $16, how can you go wrong?

Disclaimer:  I received a free pair of glasses in exchange for my honest review. I did not receive monetary compensation from Firmoo.com.

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Thursday, March 21, 2013

Cat Thursday: Random Funnies



Welcome to the weekly meme that celebrates the wonders and sometime hilarity of cats! Join us by posting a favorite LOL cat pic you may have come across, famous cat art or even share with us pics of your own beloved cat(s). It's all for the love of cats! Enjoy! (share your post in the Mr. Linky below)

Before I share the random funnies with you, I would like to take a moment to mention that Melissa's (Melissa's Eclectic Bookshelf) Piper has been diagnosed with some cancerous tumors that need to be removed (he should make a full recovery once they're removed) and he also needs a myriad of tests before the surgery. I just wanted to take a moment to ask that we send out a ton of positive thoughts for Piper's successful surgery and his speedy recovery. Hugs and much love to you, Piper, and your family.


Now for the funnies...





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Monday, March 18, 2013

A Reading Life--Reading, Movies and More!


This feature was inspired by It's Monday! What are you reading? hosted by Sheila at Book Journey and also by The Sunday Salon.

Listening To:  I started to listen to The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater last week while I waited for The Stand to come available at the library. That wasn't supposed to be until around the 21st so I figured I'd have to wait a few days after that, but it ended up coming in early so I had to start listening to it in case someone else puts a hold on it. Fingers crossed that they don't because the boys are on spring break for two weeks so I won't be driving as much.

Book finished: None, unfortunately.

Reading: Crime and Punishment by Feodor Dostoyevsky,  The Remains of the Day by Kazuo Ishiguro, Cold Comfort Farm by Stella Gibbons, Little Women

What I have left to read this month...Still have not got back into Les Mis or The Waste Lands yet, but Waste Lands will definitely be first. The Arrow Chest by Robert Parry will be read by the end of the month.

Coming Up Next:  Wildish by Robert Parry, Flesh by Khanh Ha for a book tour/review in early April.

Watching:  Over the weekend, Mom and I saw three movies at the $2 discount theater here in Nashville. We saw Zero Dark Thirty, Lincoln and The Master. Zero Dark Thirty...wow! The measures the CIA goes through to find these people. It was no small feat to find Bin Laden. Amazing! Lincoln...Daniel Day-Lewis WAS Lincoln. A truly fantastic performance and an outstanding film. And I really felt such parallels with our times now. There was such division in the House of Representatives over the 13th amendment. It really was remarkable that they were able to get it passed given the times. The Master...strange movie. And if it is supposed to be (loosely) based on Scientology, well, they can have it. Weirdos! The bright spot in the film was Joaquin Phoenix's performance. He deserved the Oscar nomination. I just wish he would have been more gracious about it. On TV, I watched the season finale of Ripper Street. What an amazing show! Can't wait for the new season. Tonight, the new season of Dancing with the Stars and...woot...Bates Motel!

Making:  I made a cake from scratch last week, but I think the canister in the fridge had some slightly outdated baking mix in it (which I didn't know at the time), instead of flour so the cake was less than stellar. The homemade vanilla frosting I made though was really good. I'm going to try it again soon and make sure I use flour this time. LOL!

Grateful for:  The two week spring break which will allow me to have a break from all the driving. Yay!

Looking forward to:  Getting the boys to start walking with me this week. Need to get this exercise routine in gear!

Picture(s):  The boys posing with my new ride! I finally have my own car again. A relief for me and mom that we're not sharing a car anymore.




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Mailbox Monday was created by Marcia and is being hosted by Chaotic Compendiums this month.  



Nothing in the mail, but I did pick up the 40th Anniversary Edition of The Exorcist by William Peter Blatty for Anne (my Kindle) last week when it was on sale for $2.99. I think I will be reading it for my Spring into Horror read-a-thon in April. It's still on sale so if you don't have it, you might want to grab it! Click the cover above to check it out on Amazon (if you end up purchasing, as an affiliate, I will get a small percentage which is used toward my book blogs and to buy more books, of course).

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Happy Release Day! Wildish by Robert Parry


Sending out a warm congratulations to Robert Parry on the release of his new book, Wildish! Robert is hosting The 'Wildish' Masquerade in honor of release day so head on over and check out the festivities.

Watch for my reviews of Robert's The Arrow Chest and Wildish coming up within the next 30 days!

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Thursday, March 14, 2013

Cat Thursday: Authors and their Cats (19)



Welcome to the weekly meme that celebrates the wonders and sometime hilarity of cats! Join us by posting a favorite LOL cat pic you may have come across, famous cat art or even share with us pics of your own beloved cat(s). It's all for the love of cats! Enjoy! (share your post in the Mr. Linky below)

The second Cat Thursday of each month is Authors and their Cats Thursday.  Each time I will feature an author and their cat(s).

John Paul Sartre with a friend


Jean-Paul Charles Aymard Sartre, normally known simply as Jean-Paul Sartre, was a French existentialist philosopher and pioneer, dramatist and screenwriter, novelist and critic. He was a leading figure in 20th century French philosophy.

He declined the award of the 1964 Nobel Prize in Literature "for his work which, rich in ideas and filled with the spirit of freedom and the quest for truth, has exerted a far-reaching influence on our age."

In the years around the time of his death, however, existentialism declined in French philosophy and was overtaken by structuralism, represented by Levi-Strauss and, one of Sartre's detractors, Michel Foucault. (from Goodreads)
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Monday, March 11, 2013

A Reading Life-March is progressing nicely


This feature was inspired by It's Monday! What are you reading? hosted by Sheila at Book Journey and also by The Sunday Salon.

Listening To:  Guess what? I bought me a vehicle this weekend! Guess what else? It has a working CD player. Guess what that means? Audio books, here I come! I have decided I'm going to listen to The Stand by Stephen King, but it's on hold at the library so in the meantime, I'm going to listen to The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater.

Book finished: Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn (my review HERE)

Reading: Crime and Punishment by Feodor Dostoyevsky,  The Remains of the Day by Kazuo Ishiguro, Cold Comfort Farm by Stella Gibbons, I have set aside Les Mis for now and I need to get back into The Waste Lands by Stephen King. I'm supposed to be on book four, not lagging behind on book three. Woe is me...

What I have left to read this month...I'm getting ready to start Little Women to catch up on the #marmeeon read-a-long. I also need to read The Arrow Chest, but first I have to locate it. It was not in the box with my review books so it must be in the few boxes I have left to unpack. Woe is me again...

Coming Up Next:  I haven't decided what I'm going to pick up next. I'm reading from my own shelves so it's a wonderland. I'm toying with the idea of still joining the Fairy Tale Read-a-Thon this week so it may be fairy tale oriented, or it might be a classic for A Modern March. Just not sure...

Watching:  The Walking Dead is really my favorite show and I can't believe there are only three episodes left in this season. It just keeps getting better and better. At least, I have Game of Thrones to look forward to. Big screen movies I've seen lately... Dark Skies-love me some alien movies! I saw Oz, The Great and Powerful this weekend and it was very good. Magical and exciting and sweet (China Girl = LOVE). Finally saw Arbitrage with the excellent Richard Gere. It was really a great movie. Totally different from what I was expecting. Tomorrow night, I have free passes to see Olympus Has Fallen. Gerard Butler is in it so I know it won't disappoint. ;O)

Making:  Still cooking almost every night, except weekends. I made Easy Beef Enchiladas last Friday and they were a big hit. A regular recipe I make is Mexican Meatloaf. The boys really seem to like it. I fix them macaroni and cheese with it and salad, but I'm going to lay off the mac and cheese and just eat salad with it myself.

Grateful for:  My mom's work friend, Holly, who sold me her SUV last weekend for a steal. I was in dire need of a vehicle and she came to my rescue. I am SO grateful!

Looking forward to:  the kids being on spring break starting Friday. Although they will be home every day and I work from home (which can be tricky), at least I won't have to do all the driving I do every day. They're off for two weeks (they only get two months summer vacation) so I took off a few days the last week of their break and I'm going to take them to the movies and to the Tennessee State Museum (it's free!). Looking forward to some fun times with my boys. =O)

Picture:  In honor of seeing Oz over the weekend...and I've been thinking about Karma an awful lot lately...I found this on Facebook last night.


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Mailbox Monday was created by Marcia and is being hosted by Chaotic Compendiums this month.  (You can click the book covers in the BookBox to read book descriptions on Amazon)

BookBox: embed book widget, share book list

WON:
Faithful Shadow by Kevin J. Howard...from Bob at Beauty in Ruins
Captain Blackwell's Prize by V.E. Ulett...from Amy at Passages to the Past

FOR REVIEW/BOOK TOURS:
Murder as a Fine Art by David Morrell...from HFVBT--book tours

Midnight Sacrifice by Melinda Leigh...from Amazon Publishing
(unsolicited)

LIBRARY SALE:
Skylight Confessions by Alice Hoffman
Madame Serpent by Jean Plaidy
Thirst #4 by Christopher Pike

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Saturday, March 9, 2013

Review: Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn


My thoughts:
This is going to be very brief and very vague, as I can't say too much or I will give away the story and I hate writing spoiler-y reviews, even with spoiler alerts. Let me just say two things first. One-in my opinion, all the hype was spot on, and two-I was blown away by this book. I have never read anything quite like it and I don't think I've ever hated a character as much (not saying which one). Flynn did an excellent job of taking us one way and then totally flip flopping us in another direction, only to flip flop us again. Whoa! I've heard complaints about the end, but really, I feel that it ended just as it should. I was not disappointed at all by the end.

This is my first book written by Flynn and now I really want to read her other books so I'll be watching for them at library sales. So listen...if you haven't read this one, you really should!

About the book:
Marriage can be a real killer.

On a warm summer morning in North Carthage, Missouri, it is Nick and Amy Dunne’s fifth wedding anniversary. Presents are being wrapped and reservations are being made when Nick’s clever and beautiful wife disappears from their rented McMansion on the Mississippi River. Husband-of-the-Year Nick isn’t doing himself any favors with cringe-worthy daydreams about the slope and shape of his wife’s head, but passages from Amy's diary reveal the alpha-girl perfectionist could have put anyone dangerously on edge. Under mounting pressure from the police and the media—as well as Amy’s fiercely doting parents—the town golden boy parades an endless series of lies, deceits, and inappropriate behavior. Nick is oddly evasive, and he’s definitely bitter—but is he really a killer?

As the cops close in, every couple in town is soon wondering how well they know the one that they love. With his twin sister, Margo, at his side, Nick stands by his innocence. Trouble is, if Nick didn’t do it, where is that beautiful wife? And what was in that silvery gift box hidden in the back of her bedroom closet?

With her razor-sharp writing and trademark psychological insight, Gillian Flynn delivers a fast-paced, devilishly dark, and ingeniously plotted thriller that confirms her status as one of the hottest writers around.

*From my own shelves

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Thursday, March 7, 2013

Cat Thursday: Demands



Welcome to the weekly meme that celebrates the wonders and sometime hilarity of cats! Join us by posting a favorite LOL cat pic you may have come across, famous cat art or even share with us pics of your own beloved cat(s). It's all for the love of cats! Enjoy! (share your post in the Mr. Linky below)

Cats can be quite demanding, especially when it comes to food.





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