Tuesday, January 31, 2012

100+ book challenge

Book Chick City is hosting a 100+ reading challenge.  This challenge does NOT allow me to count my audio books because they feel that you are not reading a book when you are listening to a book.  So I have posted my reviews of all the following books in their appropriate category!  I hope you will go back and read them!!

Young Adults:
1. Witch Ball
2. Sword Play
3. Pretty little Liars
4. Entwined
5. Fatal Charm

6. The Face of a Stranger

7. Winning the Wallflowers

8. Cupcake

Cozy Mystery:
9. Diva Haunts a house

Out Do yourself Challenge

The Book Vixen is hosting an out do yourself challenge.  This challenge allows me to count my audio books so I will be writing their reviews here.  My goal is to read 116 books this year. So far I have read and reviewed in other challenge posts:

Young Adults:
1. Witch Ball
2. Sword Play
3. Pretty little Liars
4. Entwined
5. Fatal Charm

6. The Face of a Stranger

7. Winning the Wallflowers

8. Cupcake

Cozy Mystery:
9. Diva Haunts a house

Audio Books:

Famous Child Psychologist Alex Delaware takes his lovely wife  out for drinks at their favorite hotel which is closing.  They see a mysterious young lady sitting in a booth playing a part that is very similar to Audrey Hepburn.  Lt. Milo Sturgis stops by the next morning with some police photos for Dr. Delaware to look at because a young lady has had her face blown off and he is hoping to gain some insight in the case.  Dr. Delaware is very shocked when he recognizes the outfit the girl is wearing is the same as they young Audrey Hepburn!!!

I love listening to John Rubinstein reading the parts/books of Alex Delaware.  I am sad to say this is the only way I will read a kellerman book!!!  I just love his voice!  Awesome book...lots of twists and turns!  I didn't realize who the killer was until the end.

Straight from Amazon:
After Ann Nolan, a California beat cop, adopts the daughter of a notorious drug dealer, the ruthless father vows to take back his only child. In response, Ann flees across the country, changes her name, and starts a new life as an investigator for the Mercy Street Foundation, the billionaire-endowed organization dedicated to finding missing persons. As Emme Caldwell, she takes the lead on the Foundation's first case: Nineteen-year-old Belinda Hudson disappeared from her sorority house leaving behind only one cryptic clue. Retracing the vanished student's steps leads Emme to Heaven's Gate, a fertility clinic, and the mysterious Donor 1735.

This book had me captivated from the very beginning!!  I had NO IDEA how it was going to turn out!  The killer SHOCKED ME!!!!!  it was very good!!  I highly recommend!!!

Straight from Amazon:

While home on Christmas break, a seventeen-year-old Senate page takes her dog out for a walk and never returns. The resulting media firestorm quickly ensnares television reporter Cassidy Shaw, Federal Prosecutor Allison Pierce and FBI Special Agent Nicole Hedges. Together, these life-long friends call themselves The Triple Threat--a nickname derived from their favorite dessert and their uncanny ability to crack cases from three unique positions of power.
Together they must find the one face of betrayal amidst a crowd of growing suspects--including a U.S. Senator--before they become the next victims.

This book made me cry!  I just felt so sorry for the victim! I didn't figure this one out either!  This book had so many twists and turns that the ending left my mouth open!!!!

Young Adult Reading Challenge

The Eclectic Bookshelf  is hosting a young adult reading challenge.  Since I teach High School I do have to stay up to date on what my kids are reading.  I have contests going on in my room to see who can out read me in teenage books also!  So this month I read:

This is the 4th book in the Seer Series by Linda Joy Singleton.  Sabine's mother has insisted she move back home to her old friends and to be homeschooled.  She has to leave Josh, Dominic, Penny Love and Nona behind.  While she is back home, someone is out to kill her.  She met up with her old fencing club and her best friend Brianna who betrayed her in the worst way!  You can't forget the ghost of Kip, the guy whose death she predicted that caused problems in the first place.  He is now haunting her!!

 This is the 5th book in the The Seer Series.  Sabine is back with her ill grandmother and is still reeling from her fathers guilty secret of a half sister!  Sabine, wanting to know more about her half sister Jade, travels out of body by astroprojection to her sisters house.  It can't be an easy spying missing...nope she witnesses a murder!!!  
kept me curious!  Love the friends and Grandma!!  

Life in the 7th grade is wonderful especially if one of your friends is Alison, the most popular girl in school.  Alison, Aria, Hanna, Spencer and Emily are the clique that every girl wanted to belong to and looked up to all they did.  One everday slumber party changed their lives forever!!!  Alison disappears and no one knows where she is and the rest of the girls drift apart. Fast forward to 11th grade, when each girl starts receiving letters, text messages, emails from someone with the initials A.  Is Alison back????  
Great read!  The next book is on my desk ready to be read.
The Queen has died, the castle is in morning and the 10 beautiful princess cannot dance!  The king has gone to battle to leave the girls to grieve on their own. It is a very sad state in the castle until Princess Azalea finds a secret passage to a magical world where the princesses can dance the night away.  The only problem is that there is a catch and it may cost the princesses more than they are willing or able to give!!!


Romance Challenge

Royal Reviews is also hosting a Romance reading challenge.  I love reading romance novels.  Trashy, sweet, loving, makes me cry books are my favorites!!!  The Romance novels I read this month were:
LOVED THIS BOOK!!!!!  It was a Free download from Amazon.  Darcy Miller owns her own bakery and she is FAT!!  She is trying all these different methods to lose weight and nothing is working.  It doesn't help that her sister is tiny and is offering her suggestions!  Then the hottest guy she has ever seen is opening the store next door! I found myself laughing outloud which wasn't good because Mark was asleep next to me!! HEE HEE!!

I also read Winning the Wallflowers by Eloise James.  This book review can be found in the Regency/Victorian post right below this one!!!!

Regency and Victorian Challenge

Royal Reviews is hosting a Regency and Victorian Reading Challenge.  Of course since I love these types of books, I had to join.  This month I chose to read:

I really enjoyed it!!!  Lucy is not your average simpering miss at the ball.  She is too tall and on the shelf.  Her parents have arranged a marriage for her to the sexy Ravenscroft.  It is a perfectly suitable marriage for both parties involved until Lucy inherits a fortune and her parents make her break the betrothal because she can improve her rank in society.  Ravenscroft is clueless about romance and that is what Lucy is wanting!!

Great historical Read!!

Lana's Victorian Challenge

Lana from Laura's Reviews is hosting a Victorian reading challenge.  Since I am a lover of Victorian novels, movies, dress and manners, I decided to join.  I have chosen to read one Anne Perry Novel a month.  I am reading her William Perry series about a Victorian Detective in London.

William Monk wakes up in a hospital with a splitting headache.  He has been in an accident and has lost his entire memory!  He is a top notch detective with a major case to solve but he doesn't even know his own name, where he lives or anything!!! A war vetern, Joscelin Grey, has been brutally murdered in his own home and Monk must somehow piece his life together while he pieces together the puzzles of this murder case!  

I liked this book...it kept me interested.  It was so interesting that last night I had to finish it!!  Just had to do it! It was midnight and I couldn't sleep.  Usually, I read an ebook but I had to search the web for and e-book of this to download so I could read it.  I found of tons of illegal files, torrrent files (don't trust those either) and I finally stumbled onto this website: readfreeonline.net it was wonderful!!!!  I was able to finish the book!!!

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Floss, floss and awesome Crockpot recipe!!

Floss needed to be wound

You are looking at my floss that I want to get organized this year.  It is a crazy mess!!!!  I spent today kitting up all my UFO's and I mean all of them!!!  I then proceeded to pull out all my floss to the living room so I could watch TV while I was kitting up the floss.  I had to enter all the threads needed by chart into excel then sort it in numerical order.

Floss box full of UFO's threads
The floss boxes looks so pretty when they are all together.  I started at 3:30 pm and finally finished around 9:00 pm.  Yes...it took that long to sort, wind and organize4 boxes of threads!!!! Mark just looked at all my threads and shook his head...he had no idea what to think about all this.

Zuppa Tuscana Crockpot soup

I found this recipe off 365 days of slow cooking.  I tried her original recipe and it is YUMMY!!  Since I am trying to lose some weight I modified it and it turned out great!!!!

1 lb bulk Italian sausage, Turkey, browned and drained
(I added 1 Tablespoon Italian Seasoning)
2 cans chicken broth
1 cup water
1/4 cup onion, chopped
3 large russet potatoes, cubed
1 garlic clove, minced
Bacon bits
1 cup whipping cream can low fat Evaporated Milk
Place Italian sausage, chicken broth, garlic, potatoes and onion in slow cooker. Cover and cook on HIGH for 3-4 hours until potatoes are cooked and soft. Add desired amount of bacon bits, whipping cream and cut up kale right before serving. Top with your choice of cheese; serve with fresh bread. Makes 8 servings.

I highlighted in yellow the changes to the original recipe that I made.  It is so yummy!!!!  I didn't wipe the bowl after I had heated it in the microwave...sorry, my presentation isn't Iron Chef Material!!!!!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Stitching, Weight, Bert and a Question

Bert decided he needed a nap today while I was working in my sewing room.  Normally this would be surprising that he found a basket to sleep in however, this basket was on the third shelf of a bookshelf with six shelves. How he got up there, Mark and I do not know but he really loved this location.

Here is Summer Ball.  I have completed one page.  Only five pages left on this UFO.  I have decided to remove one of my UFO"s.  It is my afghan from Ozark Samplers.  I was going through all the patterns today trying to figure out which LK flip-it years I wanted to use to make if a full 24 square afghan.  It seems I am missing 3 months of patterns.  I emailed Mary and she said that the December patter is at the store for me to pick up.  She told me she would put the other two patterns on her to do list. She will get them to us for a class later this year. So I think it really can't be a UFO if I don't have all the patterns or threads to complete it right???

Here is a crazy Stitch thing that happened to me.  I went to post on my Mystic Stitch group today and Yahoo says the group doesn't exist!!!  How strange is that?  All I can assume is the group owner who hasn't been around in years has deleted the group.  I have no idea how else it has happened.  VERY, VERY strange!!!

Mark was watching golf the other day and I made him take a picture of me as a before picture.  I have been watching my diet and have lost a couple of pounds.  I have been working out at least 4 times a week using my Biggest Loser  Wii game.  The game says I am losing more weight than my actual scale does so I am thinking I need a new scale. That is on my to buy list when I get paid next week.

Just and FYI....It is getting to the end of the month so I am going to post several updates for all my reading challenges. One of my reading challenges does not think that Listening to an Audiobook is actually reading. I think it is...What do you think?

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Lazy week

This is me when I get off work. I fall asleep in my chair for about 30 or 40 minutes a night.  I go to bed at a decent hour and get up around 6:00 am to do my workout.  When I get home, get my stitching on my lap, and Bert snuggled up, I fall asleep. I don't what to do.  I think it is because I have been cutting caffeine out of my system.  I haven't had a coke all week and/or a glass of tea.  I have been drinking water, lots and lots of water.

This is the facebook game that I have played for over 2 years.  I do enjoy playing it however, lately it has become more like work than fun.  I feel like I am just begging and begging for things. I posted to my friends that starting this week I would only be logging on to the game 2 times a day.  I would still send needed items, I was just going to spend more time doing things I want to do rather than feel like I have to continually on Facebook trolling for items for frontier to complete quests.  I am always looking for new neighbors if you play btw!!  I am just not playing as much.   To be honest, I have gone through some withdrawals from it.  I am getting more stitching completed though.

I don't have stitching to post because I am still working on Summer Ball and really want to finish this page before I show it off.  So I thought I would show you a new picture of Gibbs.  This is him from Tuesday night. He brought in this huge stick through his doggie door.  As you can see, as he chews on the stick, he makes a mess on the carpet!  Silly Dog...Mark has started calling him Defect.  Mark was out with his buddies and they were saying that Black Labs were the smartest of the labs and Marks laughed and said not ours....so now he is called defect.  Silly Mark!

Monday, January 16, 2012

Summer Ball and Gifts

I lost track of how many presents I should have opened so I opened them all!!! Probably cheating but I just couldn't wait!!! Sorry Vicky,  but I LOVED everything!!!  I have them laid out on my floor with the guilty party of why my floor looks so gross.  Gibbs brought in another stick and chewed it all up on my nicely vacuumed floor.  Silly Puppy...back to the gifts.  I received: 
1. A stitch a card with a poinsettia and candle
2. A beading Kit
3. A fat quarter of Christmas fabric
4. Note pad and sticky notes with a crown on them because I am queen!! (In my world anyway)
5. Set of coasters with royal symbols: crown, key and 2 filigrees
6. New pair of scissors
7. 18 ct. fiddler cloth
8. Fast and Festive 50 Christmas designs chart
WOW!!! didn't she spoil me????

This week I worked on my Summer Ball by Sandy Littlejohn.  I was able to finish the fireplace and columns.  I still have floating head but I hope to remedy that the next time I stitch on this project.  This week I am headed back to Disney to work on my castle!!

My Dear Husband:
Mark sent me an email last week that said "You have have a surprise next week at 2:00 pm" That was intriguing and I asked for a hint, "It is the color you are when you are sad"

Mark bought us BLUE MAN tickets!!!!  We went and saw them yesterday.  It was so much fun!!! If you haven't seen them, then if you get the chance go!  We had a blast.  We then went to the Brew Pub for dinner.  It is a local restaurant that brews their own beer.  Which is kind of funny, since we don't like beer.  We just like the burgers! It was a GREAT date!!!

Monday, January 9, 2012

The Diva Haunts the House

This is my first cozy mystery of the year.  The Diva Haunts the House was written by Krista Davis and is the 5th book in her Diva mystery series.  Sophie  is a practical domestic diva.  She isn't like her ex-husbands new live in girlfriend, Natasha, who is a Martha Stewart type diva.  In this book, she is helping run the community haunted house. She has several teenagers who are helping her since they are being graded on this at the High School.  She has her young niece staying with her right now and she starts instigating some great pre-teen drama!  What would a Haunted house be without a REAL life Vampire who is running loose in the neighborhood.  The vampire stories run rampant when a guest at Natasha's over the top Halloween part winds up dead on her front lawn with puncture wounds in his neck!!!

If you haven't read her series, I highly recommend them. They have a great mystery, wonderful advice on how to decorate, and fantastic recipes.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Cinderella Castle and Exchange Gifts

56.9% complete
I am so glad this week is over and another is starting.  I was trying to get back into the swing of things and came home tired everyday.  I did stitch on Cinderellas Castle and was able to put in 3200 stitches!!!  On Saturday night, Mark went to the Razorback Basketball game.  I stayed home stitched on my castle and watched Cars 2 and Pirates of the Caribbean On Stranger Tides (part 4).  It was a fun Disney Night.  

Friday night, we watched the Arkansas Razorbacks win the Cotton Bowl!!!  I enjoyed the game but HATED the announcers.  They were ALL for Kansas State and that is all they could talk about!!! How great they were and how they were having an off night.  Even after we WON they were still talking about great KS was!!!  Drove us NUTS!!!!!!

In one of my Yahoo groups, I am in an exchange with Vicky for the 12 days of Christmas exchange.  I didn't mail on time because I was waiting for something I ordered her from over the pond.  I sent her a Jane Austen Date Book.  She loved it.   So far, my gifts have been:  the December JCS magazine issue, a pretty pen that writes blue (at work I can only write in blue ink) and she sent me something off my wishlist.  Mirabilia's Crystal Symphony.  I just love this design...so elegant!!!!  This may be moved to my must be stitched now!!!!!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Biggest Loser? more like Biggest Weenie

Yep...I am a weenie.  Mark bought me this game for the Wii.  When you set up your profile you have to go through a series of challenges to see where you should start.  I couldn't make it past the moderate level!!!  I do a 20 minute workout on the moderate level and I am so sore it isn't even funny!!!!  I feel like such a weenie because I can't do more than that.  I am just curious if anyone else out there in blog land is doing this workout??  If you are I would like to hear how you are liking it?  I started it because a friend of mine recommended it.

Wow!!!  I did not think going back to school after Christmas break would be this hard but wow! I come home from work sit down and promptly fall asleep in my chair.  Then I can't go to sleep until after midnight.  Which means I have a hard time getting up...so it is a revolving circle!!!! Hopefully, I will get back in the swing of things soon!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Historical Fiction Challenge

I have decided to add one more book challenge to my list this year.  This is a Historical Book challenge.  Here are the rules:

Each month, a new post dedicated to the HF Challenge will be created. To participate, you only have to follow the rules:

  • everyone can participate, even those who don't have a blog (you can add your book title and thoughts in the comment section if you wish)
  • add the link(s) of your review(s) including your name and book title to the Mister Linky we’ll be adding to our monthly post (please, do not add your blog link, but the correct address that will guide us directly to your review)
  • any kind of historical fiction is accepted (HF fantasy, HF young adult,...)
    During these following 12 months you can choose  one of the different reading levels:
  1. Severe Bookaholism: 20 books
  2. Undoubtedly Obsessed: 15 books
  3. Struggling the Addiction: 10 books
  4. Daring & Curious: 5 books
  5. Out of My Comfort Zone: 2 books
So of course I have to chose the Severe Bookaholism because I do love to read!!!!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

First day of 2012

Mark and I spent the day just relaxing and watching a TV series on showtime called Homeland.  It is about a POW that has come home from the war and they feel the he was turned while being held prisoner.  It is a great drama with twists and turns we NEVER saw coming. 

I was able to finish my first book of the year.  I started it before Christmas break and have been reading a little bit on it over break.  I finished it today.  It is the third book in the series. This is a YA novel about a young lady who has the power to see the future. It caused major trouble at home and her previous school so she moved in with her grandmother who is also a Seer (someone who can see the future). She is guiding and teaching her how to use her powers.  

I worked on Cinderellas castle yesterday and today.  I was able to start the lower half of the castle.  I think if I could stay off Facebook I could  get more stitched but I keep getting sucked in my Frontierville game.
UFO Cinderella Castle
 I don't know if you make resolutions or not.  I make the same ones..lose weight, save money, don't buy so much stash...etc.  This year I would like to set one month aside to finish a chore I HATE or just been putting off.  So The month of January will be the month I clean out my guest room which has become a junk room.  There is so much stuff in their it is just sad.  I have another hoarding room on my hand.  I need to update my paperbacks for paperback swap, clean out the closet, go through baskets of magazines that have articles, recipes etc in them that I wanted.

I did set 3 stitching goals this year and after I set them, I realized I calculated wrong!!! UGH!  I thought I needed to finish 35 pages of UFO's to get to the 50% mark, however after looking at my spreadsheet, I realized I put in a number wrong. Sigh...so now My goals read:

1) Finish 58 pages of my UFO's to reach the 50% mark.   I only have 135 pages left to be complete!
2) Stitch my Disney Patterns
3) Stitch for ME! Be Selfish and do NOT be afraid to tell someone NO!

Crafty Moo Giveaway!!!

My friend, Sarah, is having a wonderful giveaway at her blog -CraftyMoo.  This is one giveaway you do NOT want to miss!!!!!

Stash Box Winners

WOW!!!  I had over 100 entries into my contest!!  I am very happy to have all my new followers.  So the winners are Linda from Stitching with my Furbabies and Amanda from One Stitch at a time.

I want to thank everyone who entered...and be on the lookout because I have another stack of stash to get rid of and this one involves Disney!!!!