Jul 28, 2010

Are you sure it's not Monday???





I had plans for today.  First of all I was going to fix my Outlook.  Yeah it died again yesterday and I just didn't feel like dealing with it.  Then I was going to go get my massage, drop off some paperwork at the credit repair place and then get my hair cut.  Things just didn't work out.

My dogs went off early this morning and since someone tried to steal a car on our block on Sunday I decided to find out what was going on.  Well on the way, I managed to kick a fan so hard that I was sure that I had broken a couple toes. After checking out the dogs, I went back to bed for an hour hoping that it was just hurting and would stop.  I woke up with them a particularly nasty color of green.  Okay add stopping by the ER onto my list.

I did manage to get my Outlook to work but only by removing Office entirely and reloading it.  Doesn't matter.  I fixed it.  Check.

I went and got my massage.  Very relaxing and just what I needed today.  Check.

Then I spent 3 hours in the ER just to find out that I didn't break then but I do have a bad bone bruise.  Remedy: pain pills, anti-inflammatory pills and ice.  Check.

By the time I got my prescriptions, it was too late to do the rest.  Oh well.  I do kinda want to grow my hair long.
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Jul 26, 2010

Review: Chains of Ice

The first word that comes to mind about this book it WOW.  I picked this book up yesterday about noon when I was heading out to brunch  (yeah both myself and my hubby tend to read over meals.) and I wasn't able to put it down until I finished.  I love Ms. Dodd's works but she really outdid herself with CHAINS OF ICE.

Genny Valente hasn't known happiness since her father was convicted of theft from the Gypsy Travel Agent.  Her whole life has been spent trying to please him and ignoring her own wants and needs.  Now graduating college, she is given a trip to Russia to study the Ural lynx.  This will be the first time she is able to meet one of her own desires.  But it comes with a price.  She must find John Powell and convince him to come talk to her unknown sponsors.  In order to find happiness and freedom, even if it is only for three months, she agrees.

John Powell is a Chosen One who ran away feeling that he allowed his wife and his team to be burned alive.  He has been hiding out in Russia trying to ignore his power and refusing to feel anything towards another human.  That is until he meets Genny.

This book just sucks you in with great characters and a plot that will keep you on the edge of your seat.  Not only do you get to meet a new player, Genny, but we are taken to check on the other Chosen ones so that we can see how they are doing.  I heartily recommend it to anyone that loves paranormal romances.  I know that I am looking forward to the next book in the series CHAINS OF FIRE.
Jul 25, 2010

Contest: Gorgeous Necklace and Earings

Kookie Designs is having a great contest!  Be sure to click here and check it out.

Practical Magic Party

Practical MagicImage via Wikipedia
I just signed up for Blog Party based on PRACTICAL MAGIC, book or movie.  I have never done one of these but it looks to be a real blast.  I plan on making up some jewelry for the event so be sure to join the crawl on September 25th.

If you are interested in signing up, just click here for more info.
Jul 23, 2010

Review: One Deadly Sin

One author that I really enjoy is Annie Solomon.  Her romantic suspenses tend to keep me right on the edge of my seat until the very end.  Oh and did I mention that the villains come out of left field.

In ONE DEADLY SIN, Edie Swan returns to her hometown to exact revenge for her father's suicide, or what they called a suicide.  She has a list of names of the people involved and plans to ensure that each of them receives a dark angel.  Things are going according to plan until the recipients start dying.

Ms. Solomon did not disappoint me in ONE DEADLY SIN.  It was one of the books that I had a hard time setting aside to sleep or work.

Highly recommended!  I rate it a 4.

TGIF

Boats moored at the marina, Friday Harbor, Was...Image via Wikipedia
Thank goodness it is Friday and I am determined to make it a good friday even though it is rather gloomy outside and I have a killer headache.  But it is friday and the rest is mind over matter.

This is the last week on this schedule.  Next week I actually start on a new one.  And to my surprise and delight, it is actually a better one.  I will be working Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday.  I am really looking forward to working two days then having time off.  And I am sure that my fibromyalgia will prefer it also.  Oh and the best news of all is that I get to keep my same supervisor.  I really like her and have known her since starting with this company as she was in my same class.  Yep she came up from Sales which gives her an unique perspective.

So any big weekend plans?  I sure don't other then starting an edit on a book for a friend.  I am doing my best to stick close to home to save money for the move.  Also Saje is working.  Got to love retail.  Now if I had the choice and the weather, I would love to go the the San Juan Islands.  DH can't believe that I have lived here in Washington & I have never been there.   Of course, we have to stick pretty close to home with our dogs.  It will be sooo nice to have a roommate after we move for puppy sitting duties.

Oh and it really is mind over matter.  My headache is gone.

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Jul 22, 2010

Progressions


When I was in my teens through my 30's, I was very much a carnivore.  Oh a salad would sneak occasionally sneak it's way in along with potatoes.  But I didn't eat vegetables.  Not only was I a carnivore but it was usually red meat.  Oh I had nothing against chicken but it couldn't hold a candle against a good steak or a juicy hamburger.

When I headed into my 40's, I started eating healthier in my way.  My husband started having trouble digesting red meat so a lot more chicken started being served.  Chicken breasts that is as I have never cared for dark meat.  A few veggies started to show up on my plate.  Mainly broccoli, which I love and corn.  I am kinda amazed at the lack of variety as I do really like several off the wall vegetables, I just never ate them.

Now in my late 40's, we have subscribed to a service (Terra Organics) that delivers organic fruits and vegetables here in the Puget Sound region.  When we signed up, we made the decision to only exclude vegetables that either of us hate.  All the rest were free game.  That way we would try out some new flavors.  In this week's bounty, there was an eggplant.

Tonight was the first time in my life that I intentionally ate a meatless meal having fried eggplant and a salad.  Before tonight if I was making even a salad for a main dish, it had to have meat.  But you know what.  It was a good meal.  Might be a start of a new era for me.

So have your eating habits changed as you have grown older?

Review: Mistress By Mistake

Again my reading tastes are fluctuating all over the place and settled on an historical romance.  Now I will be the first to admit that this genre is really hit or miss with me.  And this book was certainly a hit.  Ms. Heino does a superb job with the characters and the story is such a comedy of errors on everyone's part that the reader is just drawn in trying to discover what will happen next.

Heiress Evaline Pinchley is out in the garden by herself celebrating her 25th birthday and freedom from her money grubbing aunt.  In the course of her solitaire celebration, she ends up getting soused on a bottle of Madeira and wishing she had someone to share the moonlight with.  Well her wish comes true.  Let the comedy begin.

I very much enjoyed MISTRESS BY MISTAKE and would enjoy reading more by Ms. Heino.  I rate this book a 3.8
Jul 21, 2010

Review: Canton Tea Company Ali Shan Oolong

I have decided, and I am sure that my husband would agree, that I am a contrary creature.  Here it is a nice hot summer day and I am craving a hot cup of oolong.  Luckily for me, my last batch of samples had several to choose from.  My choice today is an Ali Shan Oolong from Canton Tea Company. 

In doing some research, I discover that an ali shan oolong is one of the one of the best known of Taiwan’s high grown oolong which is known for its sweet fruity flavor.  It is known for the greenish-purple coloring of the leaves which are rolled into large ‘fists’ or tea balls.  It also has a rather short growing season which contributes to the sweetness.

Looking at my sample, it certainly conforms to the physical attributes of an ali shan.  The aroma to me is a sweet floral blended with the scent of melons.  Perhaps I am not so contrary, just the scent alone seems to fit well with a summer day.

According to the notes on Canton Tea Company’s website the liquor should be a bright green.  Instead it is clear in coloring with a light wash of green.  The melon aroma is now stronger.  It almost reminds me of grilled honeydew melons.

I can certainly see why this tea is known for its sweetness.  The first thought that hit my mind was how sweet it is.  The theme of the melons carries through into the taste and I am also now able to pick up a dab of apricots also.  This tea has some body to it also with a slight oily mouthfeel that I get from the better oolongs.

Since it is a hot day, I also iced some up which brings forth the flavor of the apricots even stronger and causes the melons to fade back a bit.  I thought that I enjoyed the flavor hot but I do have to say that I enjoy it even more over ice.  Truly a multipurpose tea.

The final question is whether I would stock this in my personal oolong collection.   If I didn’t have so much oolong on hand right now, I would certainly place an order for this one.  I have a few more oolongs from this vendor to try out and then I will check my stock.  I foresee an order in the future.

I rate this tea a 4.
Jul 18, 2010

There oughtta be a law

Once a year, my employers treats us to a BBQ and a day at Wild Waves which is the local water park.  It is always a blast to play in the water and just have an all around good time. And in the past, myself and my husband go, spend about 6 hours playing and come home exhausted.  And in the past, I always used sunscreen with an SPF of 30 and I don't get burnt.

Well today we went, had a friend and her kids join us, spent 5 1/2 hours there.  I barely got wet this time, used SPF 100 and I have a sunburn.  I mean where is the logic?  You are supposed to get burnt worse when you are wet and I used a stronger sunscreen.  There just oughtta be a law against such illogic.

Oh yeah and I had a blast!
Jul 15, 2010

Review: Heroes Return

Lately my tastes have been all over the place so when I found a fantasy I grabbed it.  I am normally pretty anal about reading books in a series in order but I didn't have the rest of this series.  Now I admit that my review might have been different if I had read the previous books but I do feel that even a book in a series should be able to stand on its own.

HEROES RETURN is a fantasy set in a world where natural disasters are the norm and they have adapted by having bonded pairs Shields and Sources work to drain off the energies before they harm anyone.  One such pair is Lee and Taro.  They have recently been assigned to Taro's birthplace which is unheard of.  And what they walked into...

This book was slow reading but it remaining interesting enough that I did persevere.  I found that it lacked in character development.   The author might have felt that she covered all of that in earlier books but I need to see it each and every book.  The ending was also a disappointment.  It felt rushed as though the author was coming upon her word limit and had be finish it quickly.  Not a book that I would recommend.

I rate it a 2.5
Jul 14, 2010

Contest: Lotus Foods Rice



Around my house we eat a lot of rice.  Anything that is normally serviced with pasta instead goes with rice.  But as much rice as I eat, I was surprised about all the varieties that Lotus Foods carries that I have never heard of.  And One 2 Try is giving you the opportunity to win a variety pack from Lotus Foods.

Click here for more information.

Bouncing


We went through the house on Monday night.  It was great, much larger then I expected.  According to the flyer, it is four bedrooms but there actually five.  My mind boggles when I think of all the extra space.  It is twice the size of my current house and I will be able to have a bead room and yet another to play with glass in.  All I can think about is what color I want the walls and what I need to buy for the house.  We don't even have a decent sofa or a table so I will need to get both.  Oh and what color the walls.  I need to have a painting party.  Can you tell that I am excited!

Oh and this place has no landscaping however it also have NO blackberries.  We will be moving in too late to grow a garden but I am already making plans for next year.  Oh to have a house that I can be proud of.  This is a dream come true.
Jul 11, 2010

Let there be heat!

I guess that whining actually works.  After all the time I spent complaining on the lack of summer here in the Pacific Northwest, it hit with a bang.  On Monday it was only in the 60s and then Tuesday it was up in the 90s.
I have been enjoying it as I love the heat and my fibro usually lightens up quite a bit.  But I do know several people that have really been hating this heatwave.  And I feel sorry for the folks that are calling in to transfer service because they just moved.  In all this heat!



On the move front, we have an appointment tomorrow night to go look at the house we are wanting.  I have been inside before but not to go digging around in the closets or exploring the attic.  I am really crossing my fingers as it has four bedrooms so I get one for a studio along with a garage that so that I can start playing with fire.  I can hardly wait to get a kiln and to start taking classes in beadmaking.  Oh and isn't that porch just perfect for container gardening.  I want lots of flowers there next year along with roses along the path.

So how has everyone been enjoying the beginning of summer?

Review: Devil in the Details

I just love it when a book just grabs hold of me from the very first page and never lets go.  A DEVIL IN THE DETAILS is just such a book.

It is an urban fantasy that doesn't do the usual tough chick as the main character.  Instead it is a man Jesse James Dawson.  Off the top of my head, I can only think of one other urban fantasy that features a man as the main character and that would be Jim Butcher's.  Not that I am saying that these are similar in any other regard.  Jesse is a modern day samurai whose mission is life is to free people who sold their souls to demons. 

I just love Jesse, in fact he reminds me quite a bit of my own husband.  Of course my husband doesn't go around fighting demons.  Usually.  All of the characters are great.  If K.A. Stewart has one strong point, it would be a wonderful touch with characterization. 

A DEVIL IN THE DETAILS is a great start to a new series and one that I am looking forward to following.
I rate it a 4.
Jul 10, 2010

Contest: Brass Lass

It is NO surprise to anyone that I love jewelry.  And if it is unique and handmade all the better.  Well The Candid Reviewer is running a contest to win a gorgeous brass necklace.  Bop over and check out her contest.

Contest: CSN Stores

Have you ever had a chance to check our CSN Stores?  They have so many good things, a lot of them for less then you would find on Amazon.  To give you the opportunity to check them out One 2 Try is running a great contest where you could win a $50 Gift Certificate.  Check it out!  They have so many wonderful things.  I am drooling over some FiestaWare.

To enter contest click here
Jul 8, 2010

Review: Nightshade

I love to read young adult but I have to admit when I was reading the  reviewer's blurb about this book I was taken back.  It said that it was a sensual young adult.  I am not too sure that books in that genre really need to have sensuality involved at all.

NIGHTSHADE is the first novel by Ms. Cremer and I have to admit that it is very compelling.  In fact, I had trouble setting it aside.  The character are very multidimensional with all the angst you would find in teenagers be they human or in the case Guardians.  The main character Calla finds herself torn between her predetermined mate Ren and the new boy Shay who just happens to be a human.

NIGHTSHADE goes through enough twists and turns to make the reader dizzy and to keep them on the edge of their seat.  I very much enjoyed the book and would have rated it much higher if it wasn't being marketed to teenagers.  That sensuality thing again.  I rate it a 3.5.

Sorry about the double links.  I did try to remove them but blogger just isn't cooperating today.
Jul 7, 2010

Contest: Affordable Scarves

Do you like scarves?  I know that I love all their bright colors even though my neck is too short to wear them properly... But as a wrap?  Oh my they are perfect for our weather that can't seem to make up its mind.

Well One 2 Try is running a contest where there will be 2 winners for the scarves of your choice.  Just click here to check out the rules.
Jul 4, 2010

Fraidy Dogs

I really used to love the 4th of July.  When I was younger since my birthday is on the 2nd, I always celebrated that whole weekend or at least from the 2nd to the 4th.  But that was all before...

Now I have animals.  Both dogs and cats who hate this time of year.  One of our dogs, Kitsune, hates fireworks.  He has been pacing and trying to climb up beside us all day.  And he is usually a standoffish dog.  BeiJing, my Jindo, is actually doing rather well this year.  Surprisingly well considering that she has always been terrified by them in the past.  Now she is happy just to be laying on the floor by my feet.  The other two are taking it all in stride. 

I know that this is all part of growing up.  But I sure wish that I could go down the waterfront for the 4th.  Perhaps in some unforeseen future...


In other news, who is to say that you can't learn things from blogs.  In wandering through my blogs I came across one talking about Japanese Curry.  It sounded so good that we went to an asian market yesterday and picked up the curry cubes.  Now my curry didn't look like the picture as I used zucchini, broccoli, onions and shitake mushrooms which is what I happened to have on hand.  It turned out very good.  My husband even loved it.  Really easy to prepare too.  Just stirfry the meat and veggies, add water and simmer for 15 minutes.  Then add the curry cubes, stir and simmer for another 5 minutes.  All ready to serve over rice.  This is one meal that we will be trying again.
Jul 3, 2010

Relaxing

Today has actually turned into a beautiful day for a change.  We went out and did our running around already so now it's time to relax.  We can't really do much in the evenings this time of the year due to dogs being terrified of fireworks.  So we picked up a bottle of rum and some fruit juice and plan to stick about the house this evening.

One of the stops we made was into an Asian food market.  In one of my blogs, I came across a recipe for Japanese Curry made with little curry blocks.  So off we went to try to find some.  Ending spending about an hour wandering around the store just examining everything.  Found a lot of items that I already use but at a much better price.  Found dried shitake mushroom for only 2.99 a pound.  Needless to say, I grabbed some.  Also found some oolong tea in a bag.  Now I am prejudiced against tea bags but I thought that I would keep an open mind and give them a try.  Having a nice oolong in a convenient form would be nice  We shall see.



Now to begin the weekend in style.  Everyone have a safe holiday!
Jul 2, 2010

And another year passes....

Today is/was my birthday.  I have gotten to where it is mainly just another day but I do like to count my blessings.  This post however seems to be more about rambling.  Fitting considering the name of the blog and well...I just don't ramble a lot...

Oh don't get me wrong...we did go do some stuff.  I usually go out to Duke's for dinner, either with friends or with my husband when he is off.  They have this fantastic email club that gives you a coupon for dinner for your birthday.  They also send out by one get one free coupons throughout the year.  Seriously, if you live in the Tacoma/Seattle area and love salmon, sign up. (and no I wasn't paid nor do I get anything if you sign up.  I just love the place) 

Got up this morning and went to Denny's for breakfast.  Not the fanciest place or the best but again I had a coupon.  We tend to eat out a lot and those coupons make it possible. Another good thing to have is the Entertainment Book.  I get one every year.  We don't use it to its full capacity but we do get a lot of use out of it to go places we have never been too.  Found a few favorites that way.

It has been a rainy day off and on.  During one of the good periods, we went down to the waterfront with BeiJing and Boo.  I think the combo wasn't the best.  Both dogs walk like a dream for me, but they are both focused on me.  And well, you can't really tether an eight pound dog and a fifty-five pound dog together.  So anyways,  the walk really was enjoyable.  I do love the water.  It both gives me power and refreshes me. 

After that, I got to sit and play on the computer while the DH cleaned the kitchen and prepped dinner.  I wanted stir-fry for dinner.  I did the actual cooking but it was nice to just have the time to relax.

And now...well hopefully a massage..

Oh I will count a couple blessings :)

  • My husband...  Going on 10 years now.  Though there are times..I wouldn't trade him for the world.
  • My animals...with all their issues they create, the love they give is so worth it.
  • My friends.. I don't connect with people easily and I have a bad habit of turning into a recluse.. and they still put up with,
  • My job...  yeah it might seem strange but I actually like my job.  It might be a large corporation but they treat you like a person
Oh yeah...massage.
Jul 1, 2010

Review: The Hollow Crown

Yay!  Today is the first day of my vacation and I finally have some time to type up this review of a book that I finished the other day.  I have been following this series, Crosspointe Chronicles,  by Ms. Francis ever since I stumbled across The Cipher back in 2007.  So far the series has evolved by focusing on two main characters in each novel and building the story arc in that fashion.

I have been really pleased with each book I have read and THE HOLLOW CROWN has been no exception.  This book focuses on Princess Margaret Rampling and Nicholas Weverton who has been working his entire life to end the rule of the Ramplings.  Princess Margaret has always been thought a piece of fluff when in all reality she was her father's spy and assassin.  Now that her father has been killed she has been working behind the scenes with her brothers to take down the regent.  Now she discovers that the regent has kidnapped then unknown son of his ally Nicholas.  Margaret does what the Ramplings do best and offers to help Nicholas recover his son.  In doing so, she discovers many things about him that she admires and perhaps more.

Each book is fully capable of standing on its own but I do recommend starting from the beginning as this world's history is rich and you wouldn't want to miss a thing,

I rate this book a 4.5 out of 5.