Saturday, January 31, 2009

Weekly Geeks 4- My Other Passions

This week's Weekly Geek is inspired by Dewey's Knit-a-Long, a mini challenge of Dewey's Reading Challenge. Dewey had other passions besides reading and blogging. Knitting was one of them. This made me think, what are the Weekly Geek's other passions?

#1. What are you passionate about besides reading and blogging? For example, are you crafty (knitting, woodworking, scrapbooking, model building)? Do you cook? Into gaming (computer or board)? Sports (player or spectator)? Photography? Maybe you like geocaching, rock climbing? Or love attending events like renaissance fairs, concerts? Music? Dancing? You get the idea.

I am very eccentric when it comes to other things that I'm passionate about. One thing that I'm passionate about it LEARNING!! So, in order to learn I find that my interests are all over the place. I learned how to cross stitch and found out that I truly enjoyed it!! I've bought several kits but to date I've only finished one...A Detroit Tiger logo for one of my friends who is passionate about the Tigers!! I also LOVE to scrapbook!! I use to post a lot of my stuff at a web site but I've slowed down on doing that and instead just focus on my projects and how I want my pages to come out. Right now I'm working on my hubby and son's trip out west..they took over 350 pictures!! I absolutely love photography...especially black and white photos. The only time that I truly enjoy winter is when I can go out with my camera and get some really cool snow on tree photos!! I enjoy going to husband does not! So I go with friends...we've seen Keith Urban, Rascal Flatts, Def Leppard (took hubby for his b-day!) I danced and sang, he just stood there???, Duran Duran, Poison.....and my biggest passion of all----watching my son Marc play football! He is so intense and aggressive.....I totally love it!! Now if I could just get my hands on a digital SLR with the telephoto lens.......

The above two photos are just some of my scrapbook pages that I've done over the past years. The top one is of me and my husband before we left for a friend's wedding. The Beach baby is my nephew Simon....I had the pleasure of having him stay with me for about 11 days 2 summer's ago and took endless photos of him...He's adorable!!

Links for scrapbooking:

I really only follow two people who scrapbook and the first one is Ali Edwards. I love her. I had the pleasure of meeting her a few years ago and taking some of her scrapbooking classes together with my friend Tracy. Ali has a clean and simple style but yet it is always fresh. I highly recommend her site to anyone because she has a lot going on, and not all of it is scrapping. Her son is autistic and her hubby Chris, is a State Representative for Oregon. Check her out here. The other scrapbooker is my friend Julie. I met her at a scrapsite and she welcomed me with open arms!! Not only is she a great scrapbooker but she's also a wonderful human!! You can catch up with her here!

The 3 photos above are my attempts at photography.

Photo #1 is of a river that I see all the time on my way to one of my favorite places.....the library!! I took my camera with me because I wanted to document this spot during the winter. I love how stark everything looks. Black and white photos are my favorite.

Photo #2 is after a frost occured during the winter. I got on my hands and knees and crawled under one of our pine trees and then took this shot on my back looking up through the trees. This is truly the only time I enjoy winter!!

Photo #3 was inspired by Ree from The Pioneer Woman. Her photography is out of the world and I long to be riding a horse on her ranch. She's also a fantastic cook, great story-teller, and an awesome mom. I think her website has one of the largest followings out there. This photo was shot from my back yard. The sky was just beautiful that day and I wanted to capture that feeling I get when there's a pretty crop in the field behind my house, the weather is gorgeous and I enjoy(on that particular day) living in Michigan.

#3. Visit other Weekly Geeks. Link in your post to other Geeks who've peaked your interest in their passion. Or maybe you might find a fellow afincionado among us, link to them.

I'm going to follow-up with #3 later this week after I've checked out the other Geeks blogs!!

Happy weekend everyone!!

Weekly Geeks 3- Very, very, late!

Last week Ali challenged us to think about the classics. She gave us four questions, and allowed us to mix and match.

1) How do you feel about classic literature?

I would like to tell you that I just love classic literature but I'm afraid that I am not a huge fan of it. Why? Because yes, I am intimidated by it. I don't get all the extra layers and subtleties that the author intends for you to uncover. I need to become a better reader that is for sure.

Which classics, if any, have you truly loved?

I've read Sense and Sensibility and truly truly loved it. Right now I'm reading Pride and Prejudice which is such a great read. I will be the first one to admit that I find these books much easier to understand and read because I've watched the movies several 100 times!! Next month I'll be trying my hand at Anna Karenina, but I've got a ton of stuff printed out to help me study this novel in more depth and to question things while I'm reading it. I hope that will help!!

Which would you recommend for someone who has very little experience reading older books?

I honestly don't think I can recommend one to anyone at this time seeing how my knowledge of the classics is still pretty limited.

3) Let's say you're vacationing with your dear cousin Myrtle, and she forgot to bring a book. The two of you venture into the hip independent bookstore around the corner, where she primly announces that she only reads classic literature. If you don't find her a book, she'll never let you get any reading done! What contemporary book/s with classic appeal would you pull off the shelf for her?

I would give her The Story of Edgar Sawtelle. For one thing if she's such a classics buff then she should recognize the story of Hamlet being played out within the pages of this chunky novel. Plus I'm sure that she will love all the underlying dynamics, questions, hauntings, the connection to The Jungle Book etc. that this book will bring to her attention. The added bonus...the book is pretty long so she should be good and quiet for a long time which means I will be able to get some serious reading done!!

Friday, January 30, 2009

Friday Fill-In #109

#109...and away we go!!

1. I'd really like __Marcus to feel better___ right now.

2. ___Ow!!!__ is the word you'd most often hear me say if I stubbed my toe.

3. Possession is _9/10th of the law, if I have it in my grubby little hands it belongs to me!!!____.

4. __I like Johnny Depp better than his character_ Captain Jack Sparrow.

5. Marshmallows and fire go together like _Margaritas and chips w/salsa____.

6. _The winter just seems to be going __ on and on and there doesn't look like there is an end in sight!.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to __taking a hot bath___, tomorrow my plans include __what else--grocery shopping___ and Sunday, I want to _relax and maybe sleep in until 7 a.m.__!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Will You Kindle?- Booking Through Thursday

Something a little different today–

First. Go read this great article from Time Magazine: Books Gone Wild: The Digital Age Reshapes Literature. (Well worth reading.)

Second. Stop and think about it for moment. Computers and digital media are changing everything we do these days, whether we realize it or not, and that includes our beloved books.


To be different, today, I’d love to see a discussion here, in the comments, rather than scattered amongst all our separate blogs. Because this is an issue that affects ALL of us, and I’d really like to see us hash out the merits and demerits of this evolution.

Tell us what you think. Do you have an ebook reader? Do you read ebooks on your computer? Do you hate the very thought? How do you feel about the fact that book publishing is changing and facing much the same existential dilemma as the music industry upon the creation of MP3s?

Sure, feel free to write about this on your blog, but honestly–I’d love to see an in-depth discussion, and you can’t do that by flitting about the internet reading 100 different, individual essays. You can only get that by having the back and forth of conversation.

Here are my thoughts:

I really enjoyed this article and it made me think about a lot of different topics.

Authors: There are so many people out there that want to get published and are turned down everywhere they go. The internet gives them an immediate audience and instant feedback, along with criticisms and applause. I know of several authors on Goodreads that sell their books as PDF files for as little as 2.99. I can understand the allure of being your own publisher and by-passing the big publishing companies.

Publishing Companies: I feel that they are going to have to change their strategies in a lot of ways. There are some authors that I feel after they make it with a bestseller a few years in a row start to write FORMULA driven books. I'm tired of that kind of writing. I want to pick up a book by an unknown and get blown away!! But on the flip side, if the publishers didn't pay these authors the big bucks then they wouldn't have their stories to sell to the mass public. I'm not sure how they will be able to keep up with the $$$ demands of so-called big authors .

Ebooks/Kindle: At first these gadgets scared me because I don't want my beloved physical book to ever go away. I don't think that will happen but I do think that eventually in order to get your book published as an actual book that people open, and turn the pages physically, you're going to have to prove to them that you will be capable of writing a story that will sell MILLIONS!! The rest I think would be easily sold as an e-book or PDF file for considerably less than a real book. The more I play with my iPod and listen to audio books, podcasts, and such,the more intrigued I am about having a Kindle or Sony Reader...but I could never envision a life for me without a real book in my hand and several hundred more waiting their turn to be read on my bookshelves.......we'll have to wait and see what the future holds!!!

If you're wanting to check out what other readers think please click on this link and you will be directed to the comment page of Booking Through Thursday where everyone has left their post in the comment section.

I would love to hear what you think?

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Teaser Tuesdays and Where Are You...

TEASER TUESDAYS asks you to:
  • Grab your current read.
  • Let the book fall open to a random page.
  • Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12.
  • You also need to share the title of the book that you’re getting your “teaser” from … that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given!
  • Please avoid spoilers!

  • "You are mistaken, Mr. Darcy, if you suppose that the mode of your declaration affected me in any other way than as it spared me the concern which I might have felt in refusing you, had you behaved in a more gentleman-like manner." She saw him start at this; but he said nothing, and she continued,- "You could not have made me the offer of your hand in any possible way that would have tempted me to accept it."

    p. 191 Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen


    I have just narrowly escaped being married off to a very narrow-minded and odious man!! I'm sad because my best-friend Charlotte has married this little twerp and she's happy about it!! I'm bored because my sister has left me for London and I sit here daydreaming about Wickham and telling anyone and everyone who will listen what an arrogant and prideful man Mr. Darcy is.

    Ten Honest Things About Myself

    I've been awarded and tagged by Jodi over at Moody Blue with the Honest Scrap Award.
    Thanks Jodi!!!

    The rules are simple, list 10 honest things about yourself - and make it interesting, even if you have to dig deep! Then tag up to 7 bloggers that you feel embody the spirit of the Honest Scrap Award.

    Well, I'll try to make it interesting but I have a hard time listing stuff about myself, but here I go!!!

    1. I get nostalgic and weepy very easy. Today I started to cry when I was talking to a co-worker about those little boys from the reality show Jon & Kate plus 8. The little boy's daddy called him, his "Maui Prince" or something like that and the little guy responded back to his dad, "Oh Daddy, please call me that all the time, I really like that name." Next thing I know I'm crying because I miss the days when my boys were 3 and 5. To me those were some of the best days of my life. I'm getting emotional right now!!
    2. I don't really like little kids. Only my own!! If they're not related to me then I don't have much patience with them. I'm bad....I'll admit it!
    3. I have many, many obsessive behaviors! I am constantly checking to make sure my wallet is in my purse even though I KNOW that it is because I just put it in there but that doesn't stop me asking my son to, "Check my purse, make sure my wallet is in it." I can't relax...I feel like I always have to be doing something. Even if I'm reading I will start laundy, dishes, and a million other projects and then I don't finish half of them!!
    4. I am a paper whore!! I like to scrapbook but I really believe that I just like buying pretty paper which I have no intention of never using.
    5. I love Spongebob Squarepants. I think he's hilarious. My favorite episode is where he and Patrick order a big screen television just so they can play in the box!! It cracks me up!
    6. I have a very strained relationship with my parents. And this is killing me inside.
    7. I want to send a postcard into Post Secrets because I need to tell a secret but without anyone knowing its me..just to get it off my heart.........maybe I should huh?
    8. While I was reading The Story of Edgar Sawtelle my dog Bruce was sitting beside me and I would get all emotional about dogs and tell Bruce how much I loved him and I would pet him and rub his face and kiss his nose....A few days later my husband said to me, "Hey, do you know what your stupid ass dog has been doing outside?" Me- "Uh, no what?" Hubby- "He's following the cat around and has been digging up Pistol's shit and eating it!" Me-"Oh my God, I'm so gonna kill that stupid dog!!" Bruce comes into the house and I look in him the eyes and say, "Why the hell can't you be a Sawtelle dog? I'm going to kick you out into the cold, cold world if you eat cat crap again!! And if you were a Sawtelle dog you would do it!!" And at that moment I truly could've given him away.
    9. I get extremely stressed out if I realize that I've left my book somewhere!! One time I accidentally left my book at work, so when I got home and had time to read I couldn't find it anywhere.....even though I had plenty of other books to read, I was so distraught that I couldn't concentrate, so I went to bed. Can I tell you how relieved I was to find it on my desk the next morning? I did tell you that I was a little OCD, remember?
    10. I truly hate to cook. I know the MOM is suppose to nourish her family but I ask you..who's nourishing me?

    People I'm tagging:

    Monday, January 26, 2009

    Manic Monday

    Manic Monday #152

    brought to us by Fleur de Lisa---play along today!

    What gives you hope?

    My two boys give me hope. There's a lot of creative, energetic, good-hearted, smart, kids out there today. I believe in them and that they can make this world a much better place!!

    How often do you get your haircut?

    Because it's short, about every 6 weeks or so...I'm pretty lazy when it comes to keeping up with my hair!!

    Describe your worst haircut.

    I did it to myself when I was 12. I cut my bangs when my hair was wet...yep, you guessed it!! When my hair dried...NO BANGS!! I wore my dad's golf hat for what some liked weeks!! I looked like Gilligan's twin sister!

    What's your most treasured piece of jewelry?

    My amethyst cross that my hubby and boys bought me for my birthday about 5 years ago.


    Because I hardly ever get gifts for my birthday, I was home sick for days, and it was a total surprise...I bawled like a baby!!

    Happy Monday everyone!!

    Saturday, January 24, 2009

    Saturday 9 and Be Good to Me day

    Saturday 9: What's Cooking? brought to us by Crazy Sam

    1. Which meal is the one you cook best?

    My lasagna is pretty darn good and so is my chili!!

    2. Tell us what you would never eat.

    Liver, I hate it. My dad tried to make us eat it once when my brother and I were little. Luckily for us, my friend Lisa was spending the night. She started to cry when she saw what we were going to eat and my dad felt bad and said we could have Spaghetti-O's!!! Go Lisa!!!

    3. Is your hometown famous for anything or anybody?

    Sweet Corn Days!! The Nugent came once to it, I think. That's when he lived in Hanover-Horton, before he left Michigan for somewhere out west...traitor!!!

    4. Can you play a musical instrument?

    The flute. I played it from 6th grade to 11th grade then decided that I hated marching band!

    5. Tell us about your second ever lover.

    He was a Jarhead and that's all you need to know.

    6. What is your favorite restaurant?

    The Outback. I love the Alice Springs Chicken, the onion, the bread....and the Margarita's!!

    7. If it were your call, how often would you make love?

    Well, now that the kids are older and don't suck up most of my energy I could go for 4-5 times a week. But it doesn't happen.....that often anyway!

    8. What famous person would you like to have dinner with?

    Bono....and if he's busy then I would ask Kate Winslet to dinner.

    9. Tell us about your job.

    I love my job. I work in the library of my son's middle school!! What a perfect place for such a geeky bookworm. I have a small cult following so I feel special most days!!

    Today was Be Good to Me Day!!

    I have to live vicariously through a few bloggers who participate in Mailbox Monday. This is where they post what books they received in the mail by way of ARC's, mooches, trades, wins, orders etc. I'm pretty sure that I don't want to receive ARC's because I would never finish them on time, I do win a few books here and there, I haven't posted any titles in bookmooch, and I rarely order books any longer, but today I treated myself to not 1 but 3 (holy cow) books!! Can you believe it? Neither can I!!!

    Confessions of a Shopaholic- I bought this one at Target for 5.99. My birthday is next month and I want to go see the looks fun and cute. And of course, I want to read this before I do. Also...I checked this out at the library and had it for 60 days and didn't crack it open....NOT ONCE. I'm very naughty...this way I have no due date looking at me!!
    The copy I bought has the movie cover on it and it is more of a trade paperback. I don't care, I saved 8 dollars by buying this one!!

    Revolutionary Road- I really, really want to see this movie. I love Kate Winslet and I've heard wonderful things about this book. Another great buy at Target for 5.99!!! My cover is from the movie and a smaller paperback. I love the larger paperback but saving 10 bucks is much better, especially when the same words are in each, right?

    Love and Other Natural Disasters- I picked this one up at B&N, because my friend Mellymel at Lit*Chick is hosting a bookclub (and a book giveaway) and this is the book she choose for February. I had a gift card from Christmas, my member card-extra 10% off, and a 15% off coupon. How could I go wrong?

    Friday, January 23, 2009

    Friday Fill-In #108

    #108 hosted by Janet

    1. Oh, I am so __sick of winter___!

    2. __Life___ changes, big and little.

    3. During __the winter___, I _tend to feel very depressed and sad!____.

    4. _What? The government has decided to give us the average American a big check to help stimulate the economy and are taking back the 700 billion they gave to the banks____; are you kidding me???

    5. Right now I'd like to be _strolling down the streets of some quaint village in Italy___.

    6. _My Ipod____ is my favorite gadget.

    7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to _pizza (no cooking for me)__, tomorrow my plans include _grocery shopping-what fun____ and Sunday, I want to stay in my pajama's and finish Pride and Prejudice____!

    Thursday, January 22, 2009

    Inspired - Booking Through Thursday

    Since “Inspiration” is (or should be) the theme this week … what is your reading inspired by?

    My inspiration comes from so many places that it would be hard to describe them all but I do get a lot of my inspiration from fellow book bloggers. In fact, sometimes I tell myself..."Staci, yes that book sounds great and wouldn't you like to go to Egypt, but look at the stack of books you got from the library! You haven't even made a dent in those and here you are adding more books to your list!! " I've found that reading other people's blogs and book reviews can be a very dangerous but oh so fun addiction. The reviews I read are so enlightening, thoughtful, and insightful that I become INSPIRED by the feelings of the blogger and then feel the NEED to read the book being highlighted.

    I also get inspiration from the world. When I watch something on television and want to learn more about it I start poking around on Amazon and Goodreads. I really liked it when Oprah spotlighted a book for her book club. Some of the selections I truly loved while there were others that either left me puzzled or I really did not care for them in the end.

    Right now my current inspiration is my Ipod and all the cool author talks, book chats, and reading clubs that I can download and listen to whenever the mood strikes me. I love hearing the author's voice. For me it is a connection to that person and makes reading that book somehow more personal. I just finished listening to Gary Paulsen on a Barnes and Noble interview. He was hilarious and I know the kids at school would love to hear that he thinks it is so funny that teachers love to use his books because he hated school....barely graduating even!!

    Those are just some of the things that inspire me to read!!

    Wednesday, January 21, 2009

    nick & norah's INFINITE PLAYLIST- my thoughts

    Notice: This post contains the F-bomb. I normally do not like to post this word on my blog so I apologize in advance if I offend anyone....that is not my intention. However, I felt that I needed to keep the word and use it within the context of the book.

    nick & norah's INFINITE PLAYLIST by Rachel Cohn & David Levithan

    from the inside jacket: Nick's just seen the girl who dumped him walk in...with a new guy. What else can he do but ask the strange girl next to him to be his new girlfriend for the next five minutes? Norah would do anything to avoid conversation with the not not-frient girl who dumped Nick...and to get over the Evil Ex whom Norah never really totally dumped. What else can she do but answer Nick's question by making out with him? With one electric, unexpected kiss, the five-minute couple of Nick and Norah set off on an uncharted adventure called the "first date" that will turn into an infinite night of falling in and out (and in and out, and maybe in and maybe out) of love. Theirs is a first date of music, laughter, heartache, confusion, passion, taxi driver wisdom, and a jacket named Salvatore. And of course a killer soundtrack. As Nick and Norah wander through the middle-of-the-night mystic maze of Manhattan, they share the kind of night you want to never end, where every minute counts and every moment flickers between love and disaster.

    The jacket blurb had me sold. I couldn't wait to take this ride and music, I love music!! But let me tell you I couldn't name 1/3 of the bands listed in this book. I'm too old!!! I wanted to love this book but unfortunately I feel very luke-warm towards it. The biggest contributor to this feeling is that the authors over use the word f&^*. I’m not a prude, I don't mind this word being used in a book, heck I throw it around every now and again, but on one page this word showed up 25 times in just 3 paragraphs!!! After a while it just became weary to hear this word coming out the mouths of these characters that I really wanted to like. I think the authors could’ve developed Nick and Norah personalities, made them more than just teenagers who can’t express themselves without using excessive profanity. They did try to give them some depth towards the end of the book but for me it was too late. I had already made up my mind that this read was o.k., nothing stellar and certainly not one that I would rave about to others, especially my middle-school kids! The premise of the story is very original, two teens who have never met, agree to be each other’s boyfriend/girlfriend for 5 minutes in order to make past love’s jealous. This book could’ve shined without all the extraneous f-bombs.

    There were moments though that I did enjoy:

    Norah ditches Nick at a nightclub and takes off in a cab. She’s still wearing his jacket that contains his cell phone.

    Norah answers on the fourth ring.
    “Who the hell is this?” she asks.
    I mean, I knew she would answer. But still I’m dumbstruck.
    “Is Nick there?” I finally ask.
    “No,” she says. “He’s out defeating a minor threat. Do you want to call back for his voice mail?”
    It’s like I can’t help it. I am absolutely falling back into conversation with her.
    “Can you give him a message?” I ask.
    “Do I need a pen? Cuz if I do, you’re so fucking out of luck.”
    “No. Could you just tell him that he totally blew it when he let Norah get away in that cab?”
    There’s a pause. “Who the fuck is this?”
    “And could you let him know that I’m really fucking relieved that he has finally unshackled himself from that Tris bitch?”
    “You’re kidding, right?”
    “And could you pass on the message that it’s not enough to be sitting alone on a sidewalk writing a song for a girl if you don’t have the guts to at least try talking to her again?”
    Another pause. “Are you serious?”
    “Where are you?”
    “Veselka. Where are you?”
    “Doesn’t matter,” I say. “I’ll be at Veselka soon. In the meantime, can you pass on my message?”
    I hang up before she can reply.

    Pages 120-121

    There are other moments like this throughout the book, so I feel let down because it could’ve been really, really good. For me it just wasn’t.

    Tuesday, January 20, 2009

    It's Tuesday Where are You?

    It's Tuesday...Where are you?
    This is another cool book meme that I decided would be fun to play along with. I need more books on my TBR list like I need another hole in the head but I have a sickness and I can't be stopped!! This meme is brought to us by Raidergirl3 of an adventure in reading

    I want to thank booklogged at Read from A to Z for pointing me in the direction of It's Tuesday...Where are you?

    So without further ado here goes my first post:

    I am riding in a Yugo hoping against hope that the passenger in the backseat will not get sick. The next thing I know I'm at yet another punk concert with crazed, oversexed, and out-of-control teenagers!!! It is the middle of the night, I'm in Manhatten and I'm not sure how I'm getting home!

    ***nick & norah's INFINITE PLAYLIST by Rachel Cohn & David Levithan

    Teaser Tuesdays

    TEASER TUESDAYS asks you to:
  • Grab your current read.
  • Let the book fall open to a random page.
  • Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12.
  • You also need to share the title of the book that you’re getting your “teaser” from … that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given!
  • Please avoid spoilers!

  • Here is mine:

    As Caroline Slept it off later than night in the extra twin bed that's been in my room for her since kindergarten, I wrote to Tal. Was it all the caffeine I consumed riding the night out with Caroline, or the leftover ganja haze of the reggae club when we'd passed the night?

    p.49 from Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist by Rachel Cohn & David Levithan

    Monday, January 19, 2009

    Manic Monday

    Manic Monday #151

    brought to us by Fleur de Lisa...come on play along!!

    What do you do to make yourself feel better when you are sick?

    Well, I'm usually the last one to fall so you would think that everyone would be so willing and happy to do whatever Mom needed or wanted in order to feel good. Does that happen? NO. Usually I try to take a hot bath, drink hot tea, and cry for my mommy!!

    What is the most amazing weather you've ever seen?

    One day that stands out to me was about 4 years ago. We woke up to a blizzard, school was canceled and the snow measured over a foot. It was April 11 or something like that. By noon, it had warmed up to around 50 degrees and all the snow melted..I loved every minute of it!!

    Do you listen to music or talk radio in the car?

    I do a little bit of both. When I'm sick of the radio stations playing the same tired songs I'll try to find a NPR station. My hubby has satellite but poor little old me doesn't rate quite so high so I have to make do with whatever will come in!! Right now I've been listening to a book on CD.

    Weekly Geeks 2009-02: What It Means To Be A Weekly Geek

    For our second Weekly Geeks of the new year and our second post without our founder Dewey, Joanne of The Book Zombie has these questions:

    For those who have been with the group, either from the start or joined within recent months, what does being a member mean to you? What do you enjoy about the group? What are some of your more memorable Weekly Geeks that we might could do again? What could be improved as we continue the legacy that Dewey gave us?

    For those just joining us, why did you sign up for Weekly Geeks? What would you like to see here?

    Well, I fall into the latter area because this is only my second posting on Weekly Geeks. One of the reasons why I signed up was that I liked the different questions that were asked each week and felt that it would give a little bit of variety to my blog, especially on those days when nothing fantastical (which is more often than not) was happening in my world. I liked the idea of having an assignment and being interactive with other bloggers out there in the vast world of internet. The other reason I signed up is because I love meeting people (even though it is online) and getting to catch a glimpse into their world. I guess I'm a bit of a voyeur if you will. I love to visit blogs and to let someone know that I was there. More traffic means more sharing of ideas, thoughts, books, and yes, dreams!!

    Saturday, January 17, 2009

    Friday Fill-in, Saturday 9 and another post about why I hate winter!

    #107 Here we go!

    1. Enough with the __below zero temps, snow, ice,___.

    2. __Blogging or reading?___ causes me to be conflicted.

    3. I've been craving __Mint Dark Chocolate 3 Musketeers___.

    4. __My son always___ makes me laugh.

    5. I wish I could go to ___a warm place__ next week.

    6. __My parents___ has been on my mind lately.

    7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to _taking a nap (I did)____, tomorrow my plans include _grocery shopping, laundry, and correcting papers_ and Sunday, I want to _finish Edgar Sawtelle_!

    Saturday 9: The First Apartment brought to us by Crazy Sam

    1. Where had you moved from?


    2. Describe your first apartment.

    It was the basement apartment in a big complex just east of Michigan State's campus.

    3. How old were you when you had your apartment?


    4. Did you have roommates? If yes, tell us more.

    Yes, I shared the apartment with a fellow classmate from college. Her name was Claudia. We always had a great time together and we both liked having a neat place so we got along really well. I hate to admit it but I've lost touch with her over the years. I wonder what she's doing?

    5. What was your place of employment then?

    I worked at a shoe store called The Wild Pair. I worked my way up from a sales kid, to assistant manager and then finally a manager. I thought it was a fun job, except for the shoe fetish freaks who would stroke the 4 inch heels while looking at me....YUCK!! We had all the dancers from Dejavu come in every week to get their heels and thigh-high boots!! and yes even the 3 ugly ones came in....and boy were they ugly!!!

    6. How were you finances at the time?

    I thought I was doing all right because I had $ in the bank, $ in my pocket, $ for the bar, and gas in my car!!

    7. Tell us about a lover who spent a night there.

    He was a Marine that I met through a friend.

    8. Tell us about a band you listen to then. (You can cheat. Look it up.)

    This one is easy, Duran Duran, MC Hammer---can't touch this! Tone Loc, oh my god, I'm really dating myself!!! I will stop right now!!

    9. How long did you live there and why did you move from there?

    about a year. She wanted to move back to the Detroit area and I didn't want to have to find a new roomie so I moved to Jackson and stayed in the basement of my grandparent's house.

    So, this morning I get up around 6:45, stumble out to the kitchen to make my coffee. No problem. Then I go to use the bathroom and flush the toilet and the water quits running!! No shit!! please, I say, please don't let the water be frozen out in the pump house!! I waited for a minute, turned the faucet on again...nothing. So I get my hubby's coat and snow boots on, grab my gloves, hair dryer, and flashlight. With my trusty dog by my side we made ort way out to the pump house. I noticed that the light we have on in there wasn't real close to this particular pipe that likes to freeze so I plugged in my hair dryer and let it run for about 5 minutes. I left the pump house and made my way into the house. As I was walking in the deep snow somehow my feet got ahead of me and I tumbled into the snow, loosing my boot and sock as I feel face first . My naked foot sunk into the snow!! I started to laugh and grabbed my sock and boot and put it back on immediately because the temp was 7 with a wind chill about -30!!! Made my way back into the house and turned on the faucet....WATER!!! I sang gloriously....Yeah!! then I made my way back out to the pump house to turn off the dryer and bring it back inside. As I was trying to close the door I kicked it with my boot and smashed the framing on it!! Good job Staci!! Then I stumbled my way back into the house. Boy did my coffee taste good after spending that time out in the cold wilderness!! After that I made a crock pot of chili, took a shower, and got ready to go into town to get groceries. I left the house around 10:30 and not one lazy butt was out of bed at this time! So I run into town to get my groceries and as I am coming out of Meijer what greets me? Yes, you guessed it.....snow, pelts of freezing rain, and winds about 100 mph!! Can I get a break....somewhere?

    This is why winter sucks!!

    Thursday, January 15, 2009

    Booking Through Thursday

    a weekly meme about (mostly) books and reading brought to you by Deb

    But, enough about books … Other things have words, too, right? Like … songs!

    If you’re anything like me, there are songs that you love because of their lyrics; writers you admire because their songs have depth, meaning, or just a sheer playfulness that has nothing to do with the tunes.

    So, today’s question?

    • What songs … either specific songs, or songs in general by a specific group or writer … have words that you love?
    Wow, this one is really hard to answer because I'm sure that I'll forget one that I really wanted to put down. But right away the one that comes to me is Operator and Time in a Bottle by Jim Croce. My parents listened to this album when I was growing up and I totally loved it. Hotel California by the Eagles is another favorite of mine. You're My Best Friend by Queen because 1) I love Freddy Mercury 2) I love Queen and 3) it reminds me of my hubby every time I hear it!
    And then pretty much anything by Duran Duran. When I hear Rio that takes me back to my teen years in the 80's which I love to reminisce about every now and then. Finally U2, because Bono is brilliant and they have a sound unique to them. I'm not sure that I could pick a favorite of theirs...Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For is a favorite though.
    • Why? answered that above

    • And … do the tunes that go with the fantastic lyrics live up to them? For me, yes!!

    You don’t have to restrict yourself to modern songsters, either … anyone who wants to pick Gilbert & Sullivan, for example, is just fine with me. Lerner & Loewe? Steven Sondheim? Barenaked Ladies? Fountains of Wayne? The Beatles? Anyone at all…

    Tuesday, January 13, 2009

    Teaser Tuesdays

    In case you haven't noticed I really like memes!! And I came across this one today from MizB at Should Be Reading. She hosts this meme every Tuesday. If you're a reader then you will certainly enjoy this !!

    TEASER TUESDAYS asks you to:
  • Grab your current read.
  • Let the book fall open to a random page.
  • Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12.
  • You also need to share the title of the book that you’re getting your “teaser” from … that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given!
  • Please avoid spoilers!

  • Here are my two teasers:

    What happened next was impossible, yet it happened anyway: an ordinary morning passes. But ordinary was the very thing Edgar was least prepared for.

    **P. 253 The Story of Edgar Sawtelle by David Wroblewski

    Monday, January 12, 2009

    Manic Monday and a nice shout-out from JonJon

    Manic Monday #150

    If you were to name the most creative outlet that you have, what would it be?

    For me it would be scrapbooking. When I first got into it I was very anal about everything being perfect, then I went through a spell where I just did what I wanted. My biggest mistake was subscribing to magazines that tried to force down your throat that you A) needed their help B) they knew it all C) Your style sucked and theirs didn't and D) without these products your pages would look like poop. Needless to say, I have let all my subscriptions

    lapse, I don't really look at scrap sites online anymore, and I do what makes ME happy!! I tell my stories for my children and my future grandchildren and no one else :)

    What spot in your body would you say is the center of your emotional being?

    My brain and my heart. One I'm really upset my whole body hurts, but I truly feel that my brain is the center of my emotional being.

    What do you think is the secret to a tranquil soul?

    Being at peace with the choices you've made in life.

    And now I want to catch-up with an award that Jon

    Jon at ...a dedication of love... gave to me last week. We're new friends with each other in the blog world and I just want to say that she's a sweetheart and I really enjoy reading her blog! So please take a moment and visit her!!

    She awarded me the Butterfly Award

    JonJon...Thank you so much!! And I would like to pass this award on to a few people.
    Here are the rules:
    This is a 'meme' award, so it gets passed on. The rules for passing it on are:
    1. Put the logo on your blog.
    2. Add a link to the person who awarded the blog to you.
    3. Award up to ten other blogs.
    4. Add links to the blogs you award onto your blog.
    5. Leave a message for your awardees on their blogs.
    I would like to pass this on to the following cool bloggers:

    Now I'm off to catch up on blogs and then read more of Edgar Sawtelle!!

    Happy Monday Everyone!

    Sunday, January 11, 2009

    Weekly Geeks

    Welcome to the return of Weekly Geeks! We took a break for six weeks to give us time to honor Dewey, regroup and decide how to proceed. It takes a village to keep Dewey's projects going - and that's just what this blogging village (blogage?) is doing. Although there will be different facilitators every week, this is the place to come for the Weekly Geeks theme, Mr. Linky and comments, so add this page to your favs.

    So - shall we begin?

    In the spirit of the amazing community building that Dewey was so good at, tell us about your favorite blogs, the ones you have bookmarked or subscribe to in your Google Reader, that you visit on a regular basis. Tell us what it is about these blogs that you love, that inspire or educate you or make you laugh. Be sure to link to them so we can find them too.

    Another option: Reading goals for ’09 and wrap ups for ’08 have been pretty well covered by now on a lot of blogs and other memes. But if you haven’t done this, feel free to make that your first WG of the new year, in addition to or instead of the above.

    ********The above was copied directly from

    I had seen Weekly Geeks posts on several blogs that I visited and came across the postings of the passing of Dewey, who was a beloved member of the book blogging community. I never had the opportunity to interact with Dewey but I've spent a lot of time at her blog and could see just how much reading and the blogging community meant to her. After seeing today's Weekly Geek, I wanted to play along.

    I've decided to post about all the wonderful blogs that I've found in such a short time since I've been blogging. I can you one thing, I spend way more time "reading" on the computer than I do with an actual book!! I can't get enough of blogs about books !! Every time I log onto my blog I find a new link to a blog that I haven't read yet and I find myself either following the blog or adding it to my ever-expanding blog roll!! I find it extremely difficult to just list a few of my favorite blogs because I love them all!! So I'll just list a few in no particular order that I would like to feature today and hopefully you all will stop by and find something interesting for yourself!!

    • Heather at Book Addiction- I love, love, love her blog. I always come across some author or book that I have never heard of and she gives straight forward and honest reviews!! In fact, it was her blog that inspired me to participate in Weekly Geeks.
    • Trish at Hey Lady! Whatcha Reading?- I love her reviews and I picked up The Wednesday Sisters yesterday at my public library because she told all of us that we had to read it because this story has stayed with her for over six months!! Can't read to read it!!
    • Mellymel at Lit*Chick- I met Melly at a scrapbooking site and she helped moderate a bookworm thread for all of last year. From there is how I came across her blog. I love her writing style and her reviews are pretty much right on! She also has a lot of fun giveaways. Plus, she's just a great person!!
    • Wendy at Musings of a Bookish Kitty- Can I just say that I wish I could write reviews like her? I get excited whenever I see that she's updated her blog. She took a much needed vacation this past week and I've missed her daily writings. But she's so sweet that even on her downtime she's visited my blog and left several comments. I spent over 4 hours one day going through each and every one of her posts and my TBR list grew exponentially!!!
    • Bonnie at Redlady's Reading Room- Her blog is so informative!! Every time I go to her blog I walk away with great information. I especially love reading her Mailbox Mondays... I live vicariously through her when she gets all those great ARC books!!!! And she always takes time to stop by my blog and leave me some kind of sweet comment. Thanks Bonnie!!
    • The Compulsive Reader- This is a teenage girl who writes like she's 30!! She has the best vocabulary and I envy her wonderful writing style. It seems like she's been doing this forever. I think her blog is one of the best out there for the YA genre. She's got a bright future ahead of her. Sorry, but I don't think she's ever posted her name anywhere!! I did win a book from her blog last week! And she has a really cool feature on her blog called B2B where if you buy one of the books she has reviewed then send her a pic of the book and the receipt and she will enter you in one of her drawings!! I've given this blog addy out to a ton of girls at my middle school. This young lady is rocking the YA genre!!

    Saturday, January 10, 2009

    Saturday 9 and I finished another book!!

    1. Your phone rings. Who is the most likely caller?

    Some girl for our son!!! and if it isn't a girl then it is one of his buds. The phone never rings for the big people!!

    2. How long to you chat on the phone each day?

    Not a lot. Just to my hubs when he's working!!

    3. Who do you speak to the most?

    My husband is the one I talk to the most and runner-up would be my cousin Renee

    4. Do you often not answer if a certain person comes up on your caller id?

    I don't have caller id on the house phone but I've been known to let the answering machine pick it up. I do have that feature on my cell. I usually pick it up.
    5. Do you phone friends at work?


    6. Do you make personal calls at work?

    Very rarely and if I do I use my cell.

    7. Who do you always say “I love you” at the end of the call?

    My hubby!!

    8. Do you use a landline or cell more often?

    My cell, it just seems easier

    9. Who in the blogosphere that you haven’t chatted with but would like to?

    I'm not sure but I'm always looking to make new connections and friends via the blogosphere. It keeps life fun!

    I almost always get up with my husband when he works days so after he left this morning I curled back up in bed with latest book and here are my thoughts.
    Cross Country by James Patterson

    From the inside jacket:
    When the home of Alex Cross's longtime friend, Ellie Cox, is turned into the worst murder scene Alex has ever seen, he is devastated. The destruction leads him to believe that he's chasing a horrible new breed of killer. As Alex and his girlfriend Brianna Stone begin the hunt for the villain responsible for the killings, they quickly find themselves entangeled in the deadly Nigerian underworld of Washington D.C.. What they discover is shocking: a strongly organized gang of teenage thugs headed by a powerful, diabolical man-The Tiger.
    As the killing spree escalates, Alex and Brianna realize they are not dealing with any ordinary killer, but one who has brought his personal war of vengeance to America's capital. But just when the detectives think they're closing in on the elusive murderer, the Tiger disappears into thin air. Unable to let the killer get away with this narrow escape, Alex makes it his duty to bring the brutal butcher to justice. He knows that he must follow The Tiger. Alone.

    When Alex arrives in Nigeria, he discovers a world where justice is as foreign as he is. Unprotected and alone in a strange country, bombarded on all sides by the murderous threats of The Tiger, Alex must draw on his fiercest instincts just to survive in a lawless world.

    My Review:

    Well, what can I possibly say about this book except that I've been in love with Alex Cross from the very first book I read ages ago. Saying that, whenever a new Cross book comes out I read it no matter what. I really like the short chapters. I don't read it for the amazing dialogue, complex story plot, or the top-notch writing. Yes, I'm being a little sarcastic here :). I read them because I am a passenger on Alex Cross's bus of life. I want to see where he goes, what he does, and if he will ever be happy with what he has. Another reason that I read these is because I'm always satisfied with the story, I don't set myself up for being disappointed, and I never have to invest more than a day or two reading them. So now I sit here eagerly awaiting the next Cross book because I have a feeling our old twisted buddy, Kyle, is coming back into the picture!!!

    Friday, January 9, 2009

    Friday Fill-In

    #106 brought to you courtesy of Janet via her blog Friday Fill-In.
    Join in the fun!!!

    1. It's January; _it's_cold, gray, and I hate being cold!!_.

    2. __Cascarelli's Pizza (garbage can style) and a cold beer from Homer, Michigan___ is what I crave most right now.

    3. Cork and wine go together like _me and margaritas!!____.

    4. __Reading a good book___ is so nourishing.

    5. Let us dare to _dream____.

    6. __At the end of a crazy day all I want is to be at ___ my home.

    7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to _reading____, tomorrow my plans include __grocery shopping___ and Sunday, I want to __scrapbook___!

    Thursday, January 8, 2009

    Booking Through Thursday and a book review

    The Best?

    It’s a week or two later than you’d expect, and it may be almost a trite question, but … what were your favorite books from 2008?

    (It’s an oldie but a goodie question for a reason, after all … because, who can’t use good book suggestions from time to time?)

    Well, I had to go back through my list from Goodreads to see what I'd read last year and then to decide what were really my absolute favorites. This was a little tough because I read so many great books but after serious considertion I was able to come up with my list. Here they are in no particular order.

    • Tethered by Amy MacKinnon- excellent book from a first time author. I was pulled in from the very first page and finished it within a day!!
    • Good Things by Mia King-just a truly easy, enjoyable read that I when I finished it made me feel truly satisfied.
    • Identical by Ellen Hopkins-She's a very talented YA author whose poetry style totally intrigues me. After reading a few of her books I realized that her prose actually takes the shape of objects talked about in the book. I'm not too bright sometimes!!
    • Looking For Alaska by John Green- one of the BEST YA books I've ever read. Period.
    • Pomegranate Soup by Marsha Mehran- I love books based around food, probably because I have absolutely no talent for cooking!! but I totally fell in love with the location, Ireland, and all the truly believable characters.
    • Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson-She's one of my favorite authors of YA, Children's book...ever!! She didn't let me down with her historical fiction book based on a young female slave living in New York during the Revolutionary War. EXCELLENT!!
    • Maus I: A Survivor's Tale by Art Spiegelman-This was my first foray into the Graphic Novel genre and I was instantly attracted to the black/white drawings, the depiction of Jews as mice and Nazis as cats. This book touched me emotionally. If you want to try a graphic novel then I say start with this one!
    • Kindness of Strangers by katrina Kittle-another excellent book. Touchy subject, child porn, but one that certainly should be addressed.
    • Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli- I have to thank Kim from Goodreads because she threatened me with much bodily harm if I did not read this book. I'm so glad that she forced me to read this. Stargirl is unique. Someone that you would love to know and sometimes want to be like. A wonderful YA that I would recommend for moms and daughters to share!
    • 84, Charing Cross Road by Helene Hanff- This book is written as letters being exchanged over a period of time. Absolutely charming and wonderfully done. It made me sad that we no longer value the written correspondence as we once did.
    • Persepolis 1: The Story of a Childhood by Marjane Satrapi- another excellent graphic novel. I was and still am very ignorant of life in Iran. Marjane's no holds barred attitude gives you a glimpse into her young life during times of extreme upheaval. Another excellent graphic novel.
    • Love Walked In- by Marisa de los Santos- All I can say is I loved this book!!!! Loved the characters, the setting, the storyline, the voices....just everything!
    • Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen- I truly enjoyed every single minute of this book. What a witty person Jane Austen was and such a true voyeur of society.
    That was fun!! I hope that you enjoyed the list and if you haven't read some of these that I might have been able to give you some reading suggestions. I know that each blog I visit I leave there with more books on my list!!

    Now for my book review:

    The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows
    From the back cover: It's January 1946, and London is emerging from the shadow of World War II. Author Juliet Ashton is having a terrible time finding inspiration for her next book when she gets a letter from Dawsey Adams from Guernsey, a British island that has been occupied by the Nazis. He found her address in an old Charles Lamb volume and thinks she might be able to help him learn more about the author.

    As Juliet and Dawsey exhange letters, she learns about the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, a unique book club formed on the spur-of-the-moment , as an alibi to protect its members from arrest by the Germans. Captivated, Juliet sets sail for Guernsey, and what she finds there will change her life forever.

    rating: didn't like itit was okliked itreally liked itit was amazing (my current rating)
    bookshelves: read, indiebound-org, next-best-book-club, winter-reading-challenge-2009 (edit)
    status: Read in January, 2009
    recommended by: JoAnn
    updates: view all 2 status updates
    review: I must say that I found this book to be utterly charming!! I loved the whole premise of the book and that the authors wrote it in as correspondence between the characters. This book reminded me so much of 84 Charing Cross Road, which I adored. It makes you long for the day when the only way to communicate with each other was by post. I love computers and email but we just don't write letters to each other like they did in the past. Each entry is so lively and descriptive. I could picture the people, places, and even the smells. It is sad to know that Mary Ann Shaffer didn't live long enough to see how wonderfully successful her novel became but I'm so glad that she was able to get her manuscript to her niece so that she could put the finishing touches on it. It would have been truly sad to think that we may have never experienced such a heartfelt book. If you've been thinking of reading this book, STOP thinking and check it out from the library, borrow it from a friend, or buy it from an INDIE bookstore!! You won't regret one minute that you spend with these wonderful characters!!

    Tuesday, January 6, 2009

    Butterfly Award

    O.K. somebody pinch me...cuz I just won the Butterfly Award not once, but twice in one freaking day!!!!!!!!!!! As you see I'm not use to being a WINNER!!! But seriously, this was something that totally made my day when I saw the comments from these two lovely ladies.

    Here's my cool award:

    I want to give a big shout out to----- Bonnie, her blog Redlady's Reading Room is absolutely fantastic. I love it when I log on and see that she has a new post for me to read. Her book reviews are very informative, insightful, and spot-on. I've added a lot of new authors that I haven't heard of because of visiting her blog. The other person that I want to thank for awarding me The Butterfly is Lisa, she writes a blog titled, Books and Cooks. She too participates in a lot of meme's that I do and I always love seeing what she has to say about that particular topic of the meme. She also does a stand-out job reviewing books. I've picked up so many suggestions from her blog. So if you're stopping by here today reading my blog (of which I thank you for spending your valuable time reading this post!!) please click on the above links and add these 2 outstanding blogs to your reading, you will not be disappointed!!

    So, I now have to follow the rules of this award and do the following:

    This is a “meme” award, so it gets passed on. The rules for passing it on are:

    1. Put the logo on your blog.

    2. Add a link to the person who awarded you.

    3. Award up to ten other blogs.

    4. Add links to those blogs on yours.

    5. Leave a message for your awardees on their blogs.

    I am passing this award on to:

    Shannon at Shannon's Moments of Introspection

    Jodi at Moody Blue

    Joy at Joy's Blog

    Kathy at My life...

    Only a Movie at Only a Movie

    These are some fun blogs to read and I hope that everyone takes a moment to check them out!!

    Monday, January 5, 2009

    Manic Monday Post

    Manic Monday #149

    Do you have any idiosyncrasies or unusual quirks when it comes to food and/or eating?

    None that seem odd to me!!

    Have you ever written love letters?

    Of course, who hasn't?

    If so, do you still have any of them?

    Yes, I do. They're tucked away in a box somewhere. I thought about throwing them away but then I decided that maybe one day my grandchildren might get a kick out of them. They're not love letters from my husband though!!!

    How easy or difficult is it for you to say you're sorry?

    Most of the time it is very easy for me to say I'm sorry. And most of the time I'm the one who ends up apologizing first.