Monday, June 30, 2008

Sunday, June 29, 2008

The Cracked Pot by Melissa Glazer

I just finished
The Cracked Pot (Clay and Crime Mysteries, No. 2)
The Cracked Pot (Clay and Crime Mysteries, No. 2) by Melissa Glazer - and I love this series! In this 2nd installment, Carolyn finds another dead body -and snoops around with the help of her Firing Squad to solve this mystery.

I really like how the characters are being developed - very multi-dimensional and interesting. Not just the main characters, but even secondary ones (the owner of the local restaurant, other shop owners, and even the mayor). I am really looking forward to the next one!

Saturday, June 28, 2008

It's All Too Much by Peter Walsh

If you are overwhelmed by clutter, or even just wanting to simplify - I definitely recommend It's All Too Much: An Easy Plan for Living a Richer Life with Less Stuff by Peter Walsh!! It's full of no-nonsense, practical ways to clear things out and create a more harmonious living space.

One of my favorite parts is the way he talks about those things we keep for "sentimental" purposes. If it's so special, he says, then treat it that way - not keeping it in a box in the attic or pushed to the back of a closet. Otherwise, pass it on to someone who will cherish it, or be able to use it! This inspired me to finally face the fact that it just might be OK to let my great-aunt's armoire find a new home :)

A Murderous Glaze by Melissa Glazer

I really enjoyed this cozy (A Murderous Glaze (Clay and Crime Mysteries, No. 1) by Melissa Glazer)! Great character development and a strong plot gives this a one a great start to a series. I'm definitely sticking with this series - in fact, I'm starting the next one, The Cracked Pot (Clay and Crime Mysteries, No. 2) by Melissa Glazer , today!

The main character, Carolyn Emerson, owns and operates a pottery shop - Fire at Will. When a local woman is found murdered in her shop and the sheriff looks to her as his main suspect, Carolyn calls on her friends to help her solve this mystery!

Melissa Glazer is a pseudonym for Tim Myers, who writes other cozy series: The Lighthouse Inn series, the Candleshop series, The Soapmaking series, and The Cardmaking series under another pseudonym Elizabeth Bright.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Have You Found Her: A Memoir by Janice Erlbaum

Thank you, Janice Erlbaum! This latest memoir, Have You Found Her, is amazing. The book itself reflects the relationship between Sam and Janice – hard to walk away from, but excruciatingly painful sometimes – wanting it to come on and end, but at the same time, not wanting it to ever stop. And the unflinching honesty is so refreshing – from the details of drug use to the feelings toward Sam. This is definitely a memoir worth reading!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

I'm a Proud Mommy :)

Sometimes Lydia surprises me with her sweetness! Today I took her to McDonald's for ice cream and to play, and there was a young girl with two boys there. One of the little boys (6 years old) was autistic, and seemed to have some sensory issues - I have no idea the extent or even the correct words to use to describe him. (I am eternally grateful that I do not have to deal with this :( )

Anyway, Lydia just took to him! She stayed right by him, playing and talking. At one point, they even sat at a table together, and she just chattered away and they played some kind of game with their hands. The little boy didn't speak - he made noises, but that's about it. But he was very sweet to Lydia, he hugged her and kissed her cheek.

When they were leaving, Lydia came over to me and said, "He's a big boy! Well, he's a little boy too. He's a big boy AND a little boy." And then she ran over to him to say good-bye.

It's amazing how children see things so clearly sometimes :)

Saturday, June 21, 2008


I just picked up and read Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney and Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules (Diary of a Wimpy Kid) by Jeff Kinney.

These books are hysterically funny!!! I'm trying to get my husband to sit down and read them because I know he'd really relate to them even more than I did.

These are the journals of a 6th grade boy, Greg Heffley. Each journal entry comes along with cartoon drawings that are so funny just themselves.

I am torn between wanting to keep these to read again and wanting to share them. We'll see if I can get Tim to read them and see what he thinks :)

You can actually read the first one here for free:

You Had Me at Halo by Amanda Ashby

Yesterday, I finished up You Had Me At Halo by Amanda Ashby. It was a cute chick-lit book, with a likeable main character (Holly). A small little mystery, as she tries to discover who gave her the pills that caused her to drown in the bathtub! But the book is actually more than that - it's her journey (in a few short days) from self-absorbed to selfless, and this is done in a realistic way.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Sad News :(\

I just talked to my neighbor who told me that another neighbor of ours had passed away. She had a stroke Monday night and then another one Tuesday, and passed away Wednesday morning. So sad. Her husband is probably going to have to move out of their house - he's pretty feeble and I don't see how he could live alone. I'm sure this is just devastating for him. We'll drop in for a minute this evening and check on him.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

The Sugar Queen by Sarah Addison Allen

Another lovely book by this author!! I thought Garden Spells was amazing, and after this second novel, I am happy to say it wasn't a fluke!

Both books are full of magic and charm. In The Sugar Queen, we are introduced to three women - Josey, Chloe, and Della Lee. The story revolves around Josey, with Chloe and Della Lee major forces in bringing about her transformation.

The writing is just beautiful. The characters - both main and secondary - are absolutely vivid. This is a novel that will stay with you for a while, one that you just hate to see end.

It's Flinsday!

Not sure what that is, but that's what Lydia said when she woke up this morning (and then she laughed and laughed) :-D

I finished A Page Out of Life by Kathleen Reid yesterday. It was good - I really liked the story, but I didn't care for the writing style, especially the dialogue. It didn't ring true - it seems to me that people normally don't speak that way. Regardless, the plot was good and well-written. I gave it 3 1/2 stars.

Now I'm reading The Sugar Queen by Sarah Addison Allen, and I'm loving it! And now, I'm going to sign off and get to it :)

Happy Flinsday everyone!

Monday, June 16, 2008

I'm the Vampire, That's Why by Michele Bardsley

What a fun book! Jessica, widowed mom of two kids, is attacked when taking out the garbage one night by a crazed, vamp-on-the-loose. What follows is a great, chick-lit type paranormal with laugh-out-loud scenes. I really enjoyed this one, and look forward to the next one in this series!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Happy Father's Day!

We went to my dad's today for lunch. It was one of the few Father's Days that my brother was there, which was nice :) Here's the pic of us!

Saturday, June 14, 2008

We had lunch at the Rainforest Cafe - here's a picture of Lydia at the crocodile pit :-)
Met Keri (JaneAustenFan) today at Grapevine Mills Mall! We had a great time walking, talking, eating, and shopping :)

It's wonderful to meet a PBS friend - we immediately have so much in common!

I'm so happy that we had this chance to get together and get to know each other :)

Friday, June 13, 2008

Friday the 13th!

I finished (finally!) Duma Key: A Novel by Stephen King. I loved it! It is a lot like the old Stephen King - in fact, some parts of it reminded me a bit of It. Every day people working together to overcome evil (and with just a bit of help from something else...). And of course, no one does gore like Stephen King!

This book made me laugh, cry, and shiver - so all in all a successful King novel!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

ARC Giveaway - Michael Connelly's

Sheistoofondofbooks is giving away an ARC of Michael Connelly's The Brass Verdict.

Head over there and check it out! And if you win it, be sure to use it on your next Pay It Forward (or use it to start that off!).

It's a Pool Day!

Yes, I actually put on the dreaded bathing suit which really set off my pasty white legs!! And Lydia and I hit the pool. FUN!!! We went to a community pool which had a zero-entry big pool and a small wading pool. Lydia had a blast. And as we walked in and got settled, another mom walked up and it turns out her daughter is in Lydia's gymnastics class - so we're sitting there chatting, and the girl she was there to meet up with shows up and it's a neighbor of mine! So Lydia had friends to play with, and so did I! It was a really fun afternoon - but I'm a little "sun-kissed" now!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Time for a fresh start

The last of my grandmother's loose threads have been taken care of. Her bank accounts have been closed, her will did not need to be probated, and now we can look forward, which is what she would have wanted.

My brother's fresh start began a week ago when he checked into a detox center. He's now going to to outpatient treatment and AA. Please please please, let this be it for him.

I'm determined now to get my life in order - chaos has ruled long enough!!! I'm just going to be very strict with myself that I spend my time on what I like rather than wasting so much of it. My goals are to get the house completely repaired, cleaned, and decluttered in case we sell it - it'll be ready! And spend time each day doing some kind of home-schooling with Lydia - we're doing reading, math, and writing now. I'm hoping to have Fridays be our science project days!

Today - I finished Don't Hex with Texas (Katie Chandler, Book 4) by Shanna Swendson - a really cute addition to this series! It's a light paranormal romance, great beach reading!!

Now I'm starting Ghost of a Chance by Kate Marsh - another paranormal! I usually don't read that many in this genre, but I need to read this one and mail it out for a swap. After this, I'm going to need something much more serious!!